Rajkamal Kahlon

Rajkamal Kahlon


Rajkamal Kahlon, Ain’t I A Woman?, 2012.*
May 22, 2012

Double Vision/Doppelbilder

April 21–July 22, 2012

Rudolf Scharpf Gallery
Project Space for Young Art
Berliner Straße 23
D-67059 Ludwigshafen

T 0621 5043491
hackmuseum [​at​] ludwigshafen.de


The Wilhelm-Hack-Museum presents the American artist Rajkamal Kahlon’s exhibition Double Vision/Doppelbilder at its Project Space for Young Art, Rudolf-Scharpf-Gallery, from April 21 to July 22, 2012. The exhibition is curated by Miriam Oesterreich.

Rajkamal Kahlon works with the visual material of colonialism. Starting from ethnographic books, plates, and military strategy books from the colonial era, she appropriates, transforms, and destroys representations of the colonial Other. Recalling the relics of the viewer’s history, Kahlon invites him to interrogate the very ground of his own identity. Integrating grotesque, pathologised and criminalized bodies into sanitized narratives of our histories and present reality, she opens a space for a painful but emancipating introspection. Through Kahlon’s work, one is always both colonizer and colonized, powerful and powerless. Between representations of our atrocious history and its official representation, anarchistic humor shatters all beliefs in the absolute legitimacy of our own position. The fascinating beauty and unbearable horror of her paintings resonates with the transcendence of liberatory laughter.

The works in Double Vision/Doppelbilder are formally and theoretically dense. They rethink how we individually and collectively look at images, forcing a renegotiation of how we understand the art object and ourselves as privileged viewers. The exhibition presents a challenge to the limits of Cartesian Dualism. Through a reconsideration of European painting, it critiques the western philosophical privileging of disembodied vision. Intersecting this philosophical inquiry, are the colonial subjects represented in European imperial archives. The Subaltern is allowed to speak outside of the frame, unhinged and free to create new contexts of meaning. The once passive viewer now becomes the focus of the artworks themselves. Subalterns take on their own life, are animated, and appear to dominate the pictures more than the pictures dominate them. The image is created in the moment of its viewing.

Rajkamal Kahlon lives and works in Berlin. Kahlon received her MFA from the California College of Art and is a past participant of the Whitney Independent Study Program and Skowhegan. Kahlon’s painting, drawings, and performances have been exhibited internationally in museums, foundations, and galleries in Europe, North America, and Asia, including NGBK, The Queen’s Museum, Bronx Museum, Oakland Museum, Apex Art, Artists Space, White Box, PPOW, and Ratio 3. Kahlon’s work has been featured in publications including Art Asia Pacific, The New York Times, The New Yorker, Die Tageszeitung, and Der Tagesspiegel. Kahlon is the past recipient of the Joan Mitchell Painting and Sculpture Award and the Lambent Fellowship. In 2012, Kahlon has been awarded major artist grants from the Stiftung Kunstfonds, the Lambent Foundation, and Goethe Institute.

Accompanying the exhibition is a new 92-page heavily illustrated hardcover book, Rajkamal Kahlon – Doppelbilder/Double Vision, published by Kerber Press, with an artist interview by Manan Ahmed, and essays by Lalitha Gopalan and Miriam Oesterreich.

For more information on the artist visit www.rajkamalkahlon.com.

*Image above:
Rajkamal Kahlon, Ain’t I A Woman?, 2012. Oil on wooden panel paintings, wall painting. Courtesy Rajkamal Kahlon. Photo: Herbert Nolden, Mannheim.

RSVP for Rajkamal Kahlon
May 22, 2012

Thank you for your RSVP.

Wilhelm-Hack-Museum will be in touch.


e-flux announcements are emailed press releases for art exhibitions from all over the world.

Agenda delivers news from galleries, art spaces, and publications, while Criticism publishes reviews of exhibitions and books.

Architecture announcements cover current architecture and design projects, symposia, exhibitions, and publications from all over the world.

Film announcements are newsletters about screenings, film festivals, and exhibitions of moving image.

Education announces academic employment opportunities, calls for applications, symposia, publications, exhibitions, and educational programs.

Sign up to receive information about events organized by e-flux at e-flux Screening Room, Bar Laika, or elsewhere.

I have read e-flux’s privacy policy and agree that e-flux may send me announcements to the email address entered above and that my data will be processed for this purpose in accordance with e-flux’s privacy policy*

Thank you for your interest in e-flux. Check your inbox to confirm your subscription.