Fieldnotes: tomorrow was here yesterday

by Jitish Kallat

Curated by Tasneem Zakaria Mehta

Jitish Kallat is one of India's most prolific and recognized contemporary artists and the Dr Bhau Daji Lad Museum is pleased to present his exhibition 'Fieldnotes: tomorrow was here yesterday', which is the second in a series of exhibitions that showcase the work of contemporary artists from Sir J. J. School of Art. During the 19th and early 20th century the position of curator of the Museum and the principal of the School of Art were held by the same person. Many of the objects in the Museum were produced by students of the School. The exhibition series is planned as a residency where artists respond to the Museum's history and archives.

This exhibition has been conceived as an extended curatorial collaboration between the artist and the curator. During its five month run, Kallat will continue to engage and make interventions in the space in an extended conversation with the museum collection, its architecture and its library. Kallat visited the Museum over a period of two years, thinking deeply about its layered history which is intertwined with both the early modern movement in art and the socio-economic development of the city.


As an artist whose work draws its raw material from the city, sifting its dreams and articulating its challenges, Kallat's work has a profound resonance within the space of the Museum. He has appropriated its architecture and intervened within the display cases creating new readings of the collection and the Museum's history, invigorating his works with a tension that includes both hindsight and foresight. The idyll of the museum which represents the aspirations of the city's founding fathers stands in sharp contrast to the battle for life that is played out on the city's streets and forms the underlying theme of Kallat's works. In describing the politics of space both physically and metaphysically the artist challenges our perceptions of reality and what appears banal acquires a disturbing hyper reality.

Artist webpage

Explore more about the exhibition on Google Arts and Culture page.

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