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Portrait of the artist Manish Nai © Manish Nai, Photo: Anil Rane
Portrait of the artist Manish Nai © Manish Nai, Photo: Anil Rane

With painting as its point of departure, Manish Nai, born 1980 in Gujarat, India, developed his practice into a unique form in which he pasted gunny cloth onto canvas and created increasingly complex patterns in the fabric by cutting out bits of the warp. These early experiments revitalized the field of abstraction in an era when the figure dominated Indian art. After nearly a decade spent refining his work in jute and canvas, Nai began experimenting with illusionistic murals, photography, and sculpture. Manish Nai's sculptures grew elaborate from sparse beginnings, very much as his canvases had done. The precise shape these take, and the exact pattern of folds and crevices that his materials - often throwaway ones such as old newspapers or used cartons - adopt under pressure, is uncertain. They are imbued with an added dimension of time. Over the past year, the artist has concentrated his lens on large hoardings as they appear in the fallow period between one advertisement coming down and another going up. As with his earlier images of unsightly walls, Manish relates the not-quite-empty hoardings with the history of abstract painting.

Though Manish Nai lives within and takes inspiration from the bustle and noise of contemporary urban India, he connects through his paintings and sculptures with the natural world, and with stretches of time at the boundaries of human imagination. He draws on humble objects and mediums to create works that are expressive and accessible, but at the same time precise and conceptually rigorous. Manish Nai received his diploma in Drawing and Painting from the L.S. Raheja School of Art, Mumbai. He is a recipient of the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Award, New York, 2004-2005 and the 2014 ROSL Visual Arts Scholarship, Great Britain. His works has been presented regularly in solo and group shows in India, Europe and the United States. Manish Nai lives and works in Mumbai.

Publications

Exhibitions

Solo exhibitions
2019
Manish Nai. Recent Works

Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2018
Manish Nai. Capturing Time

The Noordbrabants Museum, 's-Hertogenbosch, The Netherlands

2017
Manish Nai

Galerie Kavi Gupta, Chicago, IL, USA

2016
Manish Nai. Matter as Medium

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2015
Manish Nai

Galerie Kavi Gupta, Chicago, IL, USA

2014
Manish Nai

Galerie Karsten Greve AG, St. Moritz, Switzerland

2013
Manish Nai. Sculpturing Time

Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke at Art Basel, Hong Kong, China

2012
COMPACT

Galerie Gebr. Lehmann, Berlin, Germany

2010
Extramural

Galerie Mirchandani + Steinrücke, Mumbai, India

2009
Manish Nai - New Works

Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2007
Minimal Structures

Galerie Mirchandani + Steinrücke, Mumbai, India

2005
Threading a Coded Path

Apparao Art Gallery, Delhi and Chennai, India

2004
Manish Nai

The Museum Gallery, Mumbai, India

Group exhibitions
2018
A Beast, a God, and a Line

Dhaka Art Summit, Para Site, Hong Kong, China, travalled to Museum of Modern Art in Warsaw, Poland

2018
Connecting Threads – Textiles in Contemporary Practice

Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai, India

2018
Trees of Life – Knowledge in Material. Part I

NTU Center for Contemporary Art, Singapore, Indonesia

2017
Asymmetrical Objects

Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai, India

2017
Dwelling – 10th Anniversary Show (Part II)

Galerie Mirchandani + Steinruecke, Mumbai, India

2017
Autumn Show

Galerie Karsten Greve, St. Moritz, Schweitzerland

2017
Künstlerräume II

Galerie Karsten Greve, Cologne, Germany

2017
Drawing Now

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2017
Summer Show

Galerie Karsten Greve, St. Moritz, Schweitzerland

2016
Identités plurielles

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2016
Abstract Chronicles

Gallery OED, Kochi, India

2016
Gallerists as Interventionists: Collaboration as Strategy

Lakeeren Gallery, Mumbai, India

2015
Prudential Eye Award Exhibition

Art Science Museum, Singapore

2015
Accrochage

Galerie Karsten Greve, Paris, France

2014
Ethereal

Leila Heller Galerie, New York, USA

2014
Whorled Explorations

2nd Kochi-Muziris Biennale, Kochi, India

2014
Midnight’s Grandchildren

C Mumbai, India

2014
The Material Point: Reconsidering the Medium on the (Post)modern Moment

Gallery OED, Kochi, India

2012
examples to follow!

Prince of Wlaes Museum, Mumbai, India

2012
The Skoda Prize Show

Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, India

2012
news

Galerie Mirchandani+Steinruecke, Mumbai, India

2012
9th Shanghai Biennale

Mumbai City Pavillion, Shanghai, China

2012
The Indian Parallax or the Doubling of Happiness

in the context of Asia Art Archive Fundraiser, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Calcutta, India

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