In his monumental sculptures, Ravinder G. Reddy fuses the life of India’s streets with his country’s traditional religious imagery. The subject is both a contemporary Indian woman and Girija, which means “born of a mountain” and is another name for the goddess Parvati, wife of Shiva and mother of Ganesha. Reddy’s process also reflects his fascination with India’s modernization and his respect for its rich artistic traditions: he forms clay models to make plaster molds for casting unique polyester resin fiberglass pieces. Gold leaf and industrial paint combine to articulate Girija’s surface.
The Smart Museum’s collection includes several fine examples of traditional Indian and Gandharan art, and this piece provides a point of connection with contemporary India. Reddy’s sculpture also amplifies the museum’s holdings of modern and contemporary art, which are strong in sculpture and figurative traditions.