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Galerie Magazine

Untitled (circa 1970) by Nasreen Mohamedi 

“In 1968 the Indian artist Nasreen Mohamedi noted in her diary, ‘One creates dimensions out of solitude.’ An apt expression when most of the world finds itself in isolation, reminding me of her Untitled (circa 1970), a quiet and elusive work in which a realm of patterned, ruled lines appears to be subtly and effortlessly emerging from a gray wash. A little-known fact about Untitled is that in late 2016 following Mohamedi’s retrospective at The Met Breuer, I visited with Zarina Hashmi at her New York studio. Nasreen and Zarina became friends in the early 1970s, when they lived in New Delhi. Zarina recalled that they ‘rarely discussed each other’s work but had great respect for each other as we pushed our own aesthetic boundaries. Nasreen seldom talked about her work, as she knew exactly what she wanted to do.’ Astounded to learn that The Met did not have a work by Mohamedi in its collection, Zarina immediately decided to gift Untitled to the museum, which Mohamedi had given her as a token of her appreciation when she stayed with her in 1980, when visiting New York. Untitled’s presence at The Met is a testament to not only a pioneering female artist’s aesthetic virtuosity but also to an enduring friendship.”

-Shanay Jhaveri