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Art Review

Giving an ancient art form a modern twist

Above: A scene from “SpiNN,’’ Shahzia Sikander’s 2003 digital animation. Below: Du Yun, in one of her two roles in “Gossamer,’’ Sikander’s 2010 HD video. Above: A scene from “SpiNN,’’ Shahzia Sikander’s 2003 digital animation. Below: Du Yun, in one of her two roles in “Gossamer,’’ Sikander’s 2010 HD video. (BOTH COURTESY OF THE ARTIST AND SIKKEMA JENKINS & CO.)
By Cate McQuaid
Globe Correspondent / October 21, 2011

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The ancient art of Indo-Persian miniature painting takes exacting technique. Shahzia Sikander, who trained as a miniature painter at the National College of Arts in Lahore, Pakistan, in the early 1990s, uses it as a launching pad. Her wheeling, nuanced works on paper and videos explore and critique issues of power, colonialism, and geopolitical tensions. Her exhibit ”Shahzia Sikander: The Exploding Company Man and Other Abstractions,” is at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design.

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SHAHZIA SIKANDER: The Exploding Company Man and Other Abstractions At: Sandra and David Bakalar Gallery, Massachusetts College of Art and Design, 621 Huntington Ave. 617-879-7333, www.massart.edu/galleries