Artists > Nikhil Chopra

Nikhil Chopra

Nikhil Chopra’s artistic practice ranges between live art, theatre, painting, photography, sculpture and installations. His performances, in large part improvised, dwell on issues such as identity, the role of autobiography, the pose and self-portraiture, reflects on the process of transformation and the part played by the duration of performance. Taking autobiographical elements as his starting point, Chopra combines everyday life and collective history; daily acts such as eating, resting, washing and dressing, but also drawing and making clothes, acquire the value of ritual, becoming an essential part of the show.

Chopra’s performances on the international art scene began in 2008 on the back of a series of performances titled Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory Drawing Series that first opened at Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai. The artist was invited to contribute to Time Crevasse (Yokohama Triennale, Yokohama), Chalo India! (Mori Art Museum, Tokyo) and Indian Highway (Serpentine Gallery, London). In 2009 he showed his work at the Astrup Fearnley Museum Oslo, kunstenfestivaldesarts Brussels, and also took part in Making Worlds (53rd Venice Biennale) and Marina Abramovic Presents (Manchester International Festival, The Whitworth Gallery, Manchester). More recently in April 2012, he has returned to India after a 1 year Fellowship in Berlin at Freie Universtät’s International Research Center, Interweaving Performance Cultures and a solo exhibition at Galleria Continua in San Gimignano, Italy. 2013 took him back to the Manchester International Festival for a solo project where he received critical acclaim for his performance Coal on Cotton. In March 2014, his performance La Perle Noire, he painted the walls of gb agency, his Paris gallery and has just returned from the Singapore International Festival of Art with a production entitled Give me your blood and I will give you freedom.

Nikhil Chopra was born in Calcutta in 1974, and lives in Goa. After studying at the Faculty of Fine Arts at Maharaja Sayaji Rao University in Baroda, India, the artist continued his studies in the United States, where, in 2003, he had his first solo exhibition, Sir Raja II. In 2009 he returned to the US with the solo exhibition Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory Drawing IX, at the New Museum of New York, and the group show Production Site: The Artist’s Studio Inside-out at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago (2010). The artist recently made the film Man Eats Rock in collaboration with Munir Kabani for the H Box, presented at theArtsonje Center in Seoul, at the Today Art Museum in Beijing and at the Guangdong Museum of Art in Guangzhou (2011).

C & L Shows

The 10 Year Hustle: Celebrating a decade of our gallery space
11 August - 2 September

It is 10 years since we moved into our space in Kamal Mansion, a building set amid the hurly-burly of Colaba’s Arthur Bunder Road. We are proud to have been the first commercial gallery to find a home on the street. A decade on, is this a birthday or an anniversary celebration? The truth is that we are simultaneously wedded and parent to this thing called Chatterjee & Lal. As our gallery colleagues will no doubt agree, running a space with a regular exhibitions program is all consuming. It is also one of the most rewarding activities that the world of art can provide.

The 10 Year Hustle presents three strands or positions that the gallery has particularly engaged with over the last decade. There are works by gallery artists, mostly in their 30s and 40s, whose practices often incorporate the mediums of performance, moving image, drawing and painting. There is historical material from the 20th Century, with particular focus on that generation of artists born between the 1920s and 1930s: artists who played a critical role in birthing the contemporary in South Asian art. Lastly, there are artworks that reach back to periods in art history that pre-date the modern.

The ancient, the modern and the contemporary: we are rather having our cake and eating it. But, then, isn’t that what birthdays/anniversaries are all about?

Tara Lal & Mortimer Chatterjee Mumbai, August 2017


See Images of Artwork

Memory Drawing Series
Memory Drawing Series
22 March - 10 April
Yog Raj Chitrakar : Memory Drawing II
Yog Raj Chitrakar : Memory Drawing II
December 11 - December 14
Sir Raja III
Sir Raja III
23 November - 25 November



b. 1974

2003                MFA Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio, USA
2001                BFA Maryland Institute, College of Art, Baltimore, Maryland, USA
1997-1999       BFA M.S. Rao University, Faculty of Fine Arts, Baroda, IN
1995                 B.COM N.M. College of Commerce & Economics, Mumbai,IN

Selected Solo Exhibitions:
2012    Inside Out, Gallery Continua, San Gimignano, Italy
2012    Blackening IV: Bay 19, Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia
2010    Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory drawing X, Chatterjee & Lal, and Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai, IN
2010    Drum Solo, Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai ,IN
2009    Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory drawing IX, Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai, IN
2007    Yog Raj Chitrakar: Memory drawing II, Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai, IN
2005    Sir Raja III, Supported by Chatterjee & Lal The Fourth Floor, Kitab Mahal, Mumbai, IN.
2003    Sir Raja II,Kinnear Warehouse, Columbus, Ohio, USA
2002    Sir Raja I, 105 West Prescott Street basement, Ohio, USA

Selected Group Exhibitions:
2012    Frieze Art Fair, Focus, Chatterjee & Lal, London, UK
2012    fiVe ,Chatterjee & Lal, Mumbai, IN
2012   Inside Out: As the stars view the Palace, Palace Theatre, Columbus, Ohio, USA 2012    Tenth Parallel North Contemporary Photography from India and South America, Fondazione Fotografia, Modena , Italy
2011    Act // ing, Meinblau – House of Arts Berlin, Germany
2011    The Matter Within: New Contemporary Art of India, Yerba Buena Centre for the Arts, San Franscisco, California, USA
2011    H Box Artsonje, Seoul ; Today Art Museum, Beijing ; Guandong Museum of Art, Guangzhou, China
2011    Crossroads: India escalate (India Pavilion), Prague Biennale 5, Prague, Czech Republic
2011    In India and Far Beyond: Khoj International Artists Association, Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen IFA Gallery, Stuttgart and Berlin, Germany
2011    Genaration in Transition: New Art from India, Zacheta National Gallery of Art, Warsaw, Poland
2011    Liberalis, Projecte Sindelfingen, Galerie der Stadt Sindelfingen, Germany
2011    Beyond the Self, National Portrait Gallery, Canberra, Australia
2011    Paris, Delhi, Bombay, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France
2010    Production Site: The Artist’s Studio Inside Out, Museum of Contemporary Art, Chicago, USA
2009    Kunstenfestivaldesarts 09, Brussels, Belgium
2009    The Self & the Other: Portraiture in contemporary Indian photography, ARTIUM Centro-Museo Vasco de Arte Contemporaneo, Spain
2009    The Self & the Other: Portraiture in contemporary Indian photography, La Virrenina Centre de La Imatge, Barcelona, Spain
2009    Marina Abramovic presents: Manchester International Festival 09, Manchester, UK
2009    53rd International Art Exhibition, Making Worlds (curated by Daniel Birnbaum), La Biennale di Venezia, Venice, Italy
2009    Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Brussels, Belgium
2009    Indian Highway, Astrup Fearnley Museum, Oslo, Norway
2008    Indian Highway, Serpentine Gallery, London, UK
2008    CHALO INDIA!, Mori Art Museum, Tokyo, Japan
2008    Time Crevasse, Yokohama Triennale 2008, Yokohama, Japan
2008    Chatterjee & Lal @ Thomas Erben Gallery, New York, USA
2008    Live Art 08, Khoj International Artist’s Association, New Delhi, IN
2007    Khoj International Artist’s Association, Kashmir, IN
2007    Posing (curated by Joelle Jenson & Andrea Cote), Abrons Art Center, New York, USA
2007    House of Mirrors (curated by Deeksha Nath), Grosvenor Gallery,London, UK
2007    Performance Art Residency, Khoj International Artist’s Association, New Delhi, IN
2007    Beings and Doings (curated by Emma Ridgeway), British Council, New Delhi, IN
2006    Asian Contemporary Art week (curated by Leeza Ahmady), Brooklyn Museum, New York, USA
2005    The Taste of Others (curated by Leeza Ahmady), Apexart, New York, USA
2004    Contemporaneity: International Video Art in Kyrgyzstan (curated by Leeza Ahmady),Central Asia Biennale, Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

2012           Fremantle Arts Centre, Western Australia
2012           Asialink, The University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia
2012           Blackening III: Bay 19, Performance Space, Carriageworks, Sydney, Australia
2011-12      Broken White II, Frei University, Berlin, Germany
2010           Centre Intermondes, La Rochelle, France
2009           Kunstenfestivaldesarts, Brussels, Belgium
2007           International Performance Art Residency, Khoj, IN
2007           Khoj Kasheer, Srinagar, Kashmir, IN