Headlands Center for the Arts

Mrinalini Aggarwal

california | visual
Graduate Fellowship Program 2017—2018, San Francisco Art Institute

Artist Statement

My practice involves an anti-disciplinary exploration of space—its qualities, potentialities, vacancies. I am interested in the relationships that develop within our human-animal narratives through the spaces we inhabit. I am interested in cities and the explosions of life that occupy, alter, and manipulate urban architecture. I grew up in Delhi where public space is both precious and shared, often the only source of nurturance, stability, and even freedom. Through a hybrid practice involving architecture, art, and design, my works seek to re-consider the values that spaces offer and the ways through which they mediate human relationships.

I build large-scale, site specific installations that create emotional, embodied experiences of sacred, internal spaces. They are offerings of hope, wonderment, and imagination; responding to the sometimes mundane, alienating, and even devastating cityscapes that surround me. The works are the results of my experiments, disjointed in form, aesthetic, and method, each a proposition or “what if” coming to life. The spaces I design often enter the realm of social practice, doubling as venues for workshops, performances, and interventions that encourage human interaction.

While at Headlands

At Headlands I will continue research towards a site-specific pavilion that I have been developing for the last year. Titled As Though it Rained from Stars the work seeks to express and embody human desire through the medium of space. Inspired in form by traditional Islamic bathhouses in India, the installation speaks to the primal, socialized and poetic desires that drive our species. The growth patterns within the pavilion are based on studies of slime—mold and cilia, both natural forms that I believe represent the aesthetics of desire. The rugged, generative landscape of the Headlands will offer me living explorations into these relationships with nature. Simultaneously, I am working to build opportunities for collaborative spatial art projects—I am interested in developing programs based on place-making, education, installation, and performance art, and hope to create greater opportunities for artists and thinkers involved with space and the body.

 

Selected Works

Personal Website

http://www.streetlight.space