shivanjani lal
Shivanjani Lal

Shivanjani Lal Bio

I am an emerging Pacific artist and curator. I was born in Fiji, I am culturally Indian, and I grew up in Australia. My arts practice has always questioned where I fit through my thematic examination of the body, gesture and home.

I work with storytelling, photography and sculpture to create exhibitions, installations and video-based works which generate an active and empathetic response from the audience towards the quiet and untold stories of the “other”. These are often sourced from my own personal history as well as through research.

My works are healing spaces that are activated by the audience or myself. This means that the work is not finished until the audience has engaged with it either through intervention or through activation. These encounters are not en masse, rather they are small shared experiences that evoke ritual and contemplation through non-threatening acts of participation within spaces.

Shivanjani.jpg
 

Shivanjani Lal is a twice removed Fijian Indian Australian Artist and Curator. Her history is shaped by the Kala Pani [Black Waters]. She is from the indentured labour diaspora of the Indian and Pacific Oceans. She works across mediums to explore her dislocation that seeks to account for memory, erasure, healing, and the archive.

Currently Lal frames her personal narratives through Sunno a Fijian Hindi word which is to listen with understanding; to the social history which brought her family from India to Fiji and now to Australia. This is done in an effort to preserve, create and redefine the history of the Indo-Fijian Community away from the narratives produced by the current political climate in both Fiji and India.

Her current research posits that her body and the landscapes she is from hold the grief of being removed. In her works she is attempting to document and create gestures of healing. By using unmaking processes such as erasure, she hopes to document the ghosts of her ancestors and account for their silences through gestures which atone and account for our grief.

Critically, she seeks to identify where healing begins: in the body, in the land or does it begin in the Kala Pani?

Her work is for the women in her family.