Sunday, June 24
Art

Priya Chugh’s “Pardey Ke Peeche” Layers Mughal History and Modern Textures

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Rewire your brain.

Pardey Ke Peeche (Behind the Curtains) is a graphic art series that examines the arc of the human experience. We have the exclusive details and release here.

“[The series] has to do with the nuances of perception. What we see is always shaded by some element of our being, and what we see in other people is a projection,” Chugh told Kajal over email.

Art by Priya Chugh

Each piece includes a Mughal silhouette, a South Asian textile, and a textural element. If this series was a music genre, Chugh says it would be a house-remixed qawwali. Art and music are languages. In South Asian culture, these art forms are indivisible. Art tells history. Even plain discourse about writers and artists throughout history implicates that poetry, music, and mind-body expressions are virtually the same thing, if not in the same genus.

Artists are apertures unto themselves. They are vessels for external expression and internal receipt. Moreover, art is a place for time and spirit to live. It’s this spirit that holds together and modifies time to make it everlasting.

Akal murat (timeless image) is a term in the most fundamental composition, the Mool-Mantar, of the Guru Granth Sahib. Akal modifies murat to imply everlasting form that transcends time and space, yet manifests in the spacio-temporal forms of our realities. Conventionally, murati are still figures, statues and photos typically of religious icons like Ganesha, Durga, Lakshmi, etc.

Art by Priya Chugh

Chugh’s works are not murati. But inside of them, there is her spirit and the greater spirit that encapsulates us and expands the universe. Akal murat.

In this series, we find the neural spirit of language and its associated perceptions. From every glance, every flit of the lashes and furrow of the brow, we can find a shift. This work is visceral as much as it is cerebral. 

Art by Priya Chugh

“This series allowed me to see myself in a different way…A year ago, I would have never believed I would be confident enough to create an entire series, let alone share it,” she said.

Scroll on below to check out the rest of the series. Chugh told Kajal that music fuels her creative process. So, we’ve paired some our favorite music to a few of Chugh’s pieces for the ultimate immersive experience.

Interpreting Pardey Ke Peeche With Music

Art by Priya Chugh

Kajal‘s Take:

Pair it with “Manmohini Morey,” featuring Aditya Rao. The song is about passion and its arrival, and with that, the cracks and rebuffing along the way that we hear in the scorching vocals and this image.

 

Art by Priya Chugh

Kajal‘s Take:

The “Chamma Chamma” trap remix transforms an old banger into its bigger, badder form. We get the same feels from this artwork.

 

Art by Priya Chugh

Kajal‘s Take:

This piece looks like a cotton candy dream. It’s mystifying, electric, sensual and a little brooding, much like the music and cinematography for the “Rangeela Re” and “Lean On” mash-up.

Check out Priya Chugh’s portfolio on her website and follow her on Instagram

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