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Shilpa Gupta

For, in Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit: 100 Jailed Poets


Shilpa Gupta
Born in Mumbai, India, in 1976


For, in Your Tongue, I Cannot Fit: 100 Jailed Poets




100 books cast in gun metal, table, 1/3


128 x 1219 x 61 cm


Purchase, W. Bruce C. Bailey Fête-champêtre Fund, inv. 2019.184


International Contemporary Art

Shilpa Gupta is one of the most important Indian artists of her generation. Her multimedia practice challenges our understanding of the borders that mediate our existence, whether they are imagined or real, physical or ideological. Drawing its title from a line by the Azerbaijani poet Nesimi (about 1369-1417), this work consists of a hundred gunmetal casts of books written by poets from around the
world, and from different eras, who were jailed for their writing. On the books are inscriptions or English translations of quotations selected by the artist from collections of poems dear to her. The poets presented are from some forty countries, including Afghanistan, France, India, Nigeria, Pakistan, Syria and the United States. The verses assembled
in this work reveal the power of human voices to resist oppression.

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