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‘When Soak Becomes Spill’ by Subodh Gupta, stainless steel, made in India and London, 2015, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

‘When Soak Becomes Spill’ by Subodh Gupta, stainless steel, made in India and London, 2015, © Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Exhibition Road Installation

Subodh Gupta is one of India’s most renowned contemporary artists. His installations have been exhibited in Paris, New York, Beijing, Sao Paolo, Seoul, Tokyo and many other cities across the world. In January 2014 a major retrospective of his work was held at the National Gallery of Modern Art in Delhi.

Gupta is known for transforming everyday objects into large-scale installations that both reflect on his heritage and explore universal themes. His installations are often made from stainless steel buckets, pots, plates and cooking utensils that are used by large sections of the population. In the west these shiny vessels represent an exotic India, for the artist, these mass-produced utensils are part of his childhood and local surroundings.

For his installation ‘When Soak Becomes Spill’, Gupta created a stainless steel bucket of an overwhelming scale with hundreds of small vessels spilling from the brim like flowing water. It alludes to the wastage of the world’s natural resources and the growth of consumerism. The shiny utensils seem precious, bright and attractive – something to be coveted. They represent the temptation of new commodities and the promise of a better future. However, as these vessels are empty they suggest the ultimate poverty of a consumer society.


View transcript of video

This installation featured as part of the V&A India Festival and was on display from 23 October 2015 - 31 January 2016.


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