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she walked in reverse and found their songs

she walked in reverse and found their songs

Suchitra Mattai

Suchitra Mattai’s largest solo exhibition to date will feature all new work, including major site-specific installations. The exhibition is a significant exploration of generational history and memories, both personal and universal. Mattai was born in Georgetown, Guyana, before immigrating to Canada as a young child. The history of her family—Indian immigrants brought to work as indentured laborers in Guyana—deeply influences her practice. She often uses techniques like embroidery, weaving, and crocheting to honor their labor.

The exhibition centers around a major large-scale hanging sculpture that reimagines Mattai’s family home in Guyana. The home installation will be draped in Mattai’s signature sari tapestries, this time including references to tropical Caribbean landscapes and South Asian architecture. Visitors are invited to go on a journey slipping between the interior and exterior of both domestic space and the self.

Mattai is also creating a new series of found furniture sculptures. She disembowels chairs, excises the centers of tables or bureaus, and fills these spaces with anthropomorphized woven forms that are simultaneously abject, humorous, and unsettling. These forms become the imagined figurative inhabitants of the space. Surrounding the house sculpture, they continue an experiential inversion of exterior and interior, spilling the imagined domestic space into the gallery. Crafted from vintage furniture and sari fabric, these pieces carry the untold stories of the people, families, and communities who lived with and loved them.


June 6—September 15, 2024


Artist Website & Instagram


Suchitra Mattai, a cosmic awakening (detail), 2023, vintage saris, fringe, and tassels Courtesy of the artist and Roberts Projects LA Photo by Heather Rasmussen

Suchitra Mattai is a multi-disciplinary artist of Indo-Caribbean descent who creates mixed-media paintings, sculptures, and installations that often combine processes and materials associated with the domestic sphere, such as embroidery, weaving, and found clothing, in order to honor the labor of women.

Past projects include group exhibitions at the MCA Chicago, the ICA Boston, Crystal Bridges Museum (Bentonville, AR), the Sharjah Biennial 14 (Sharjah, UAE) , the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto, Canada), the MCA Denver, and solo exhibitions at the Center for Visual Art MSU Denver and the Boise Museum of Art. Upcoming 2024 solo exhibitions include Socrates Sculpture Park (New York, NY), the Tampa Museum of Art, and the National Museum of Women in the Arts. Her works are represented in public and private collections which include Crystal Bridges Museum of Art, the Denver Art Museum, the Nasher Museum of Art, the Tampa Museum of Art, the Joslyn Museum of Art, the Crocker Museum of Art, the Portland Museum of Art, and the University of Michigan Museum of Art. Suchitra received an MFA in painting and drawing and an MA in South Asian art from the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia and is a recipient of an Anonymous Was a Woman Award (2023) and a Smithsonian Artist Research Fellowship (2024). Mattai is represented by Roberts Projects, Los Angeles.