The Indian born, New York City based artist Rina Banerjee has a love of materials, heritage textiles, ethnicity and fashion, colonial objects and furnishings, historical architecture, and their ability to disguise, animate, locate their inherent meanings in her art work. While sculptures and drawings, paintings use a fusion of cultures and unravel our connected experiences an explosion of differences alternate the way we receive our identity. Rina says her work explores "specific colonial moments that reinvent place and identity as complex diasporic experiences intertwined and sometimes surreal.."
Banerjee was born in Kolkata in 1963 and moved with her family to the UK and then to USA. She completed a Bachelor of Science degree in Polymer Engineering at Case Western University in 1993 after took a job as a polymer research chemist consulting for Dow Chemical, Nasa, etc at Pennsylvania State University. After a few years abandoned the sciences to pursue her art, she completed the MFA degree program at Yale University School of Art in the area of Painting in 1995, where she won prestigious awards for Drawing and Painting, Sckowhegan - Yale Painting scholarship and Norfolk-Yale summer program Drawing award.
Rina Banerjee's experience growing up in urban sites and in communities of mixed cultural/racial locations provides a content in her work that delivers a global all seeking vision. This love of substance, fabric and texture manifests itself in her multi media works in which disparate objects such as taxidermy alligators and wooden cots, fish bone, ostrich eggs and light bulbs, amber vials are strung up or nestled in with feathers and umbrellas, souveniers of low culture and high culture, antique furnishings, icons of different faiths and plumes of fabric.
Her preoccupation with the role of culture, mythology, fairy tales, anthropology, ethnography fold the trajectories of race, exotic capital, and the forces of our migration, mobility with tourism and global commerce. Tensions and desires created out of our individual increased travel and access to information technologies have preforiated our boundaries creating a malleabity that manages a globalized sense of space and a diminished experience of dominant culture paradigm.