December’s #CritClub 6 visited Kettle’s Yard in Cambridge to see the internationally famed artist Nihkil Chopra, fresh from a triumphant residency at the Met in New York, perform his live art work ‘Rouge’. The performance was part of the exhibition ‘Homelands’ which featured work by artists from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, but I must admit I mainly went because I’ve been a fan of Chopra for a long time and had missed his exhibition at New Art Exchange in Nottingham – he performs fairly often in the UK.

The performance began in a large cage in which Chopra dressed himself in a stylised Renaissance-look black pantaloons and jacket, before slowly walking around the corner to a large expanse of white wall. There was a pile of black tubes on the floor – the lipsticks which he used to draw a Gainsborough-esque English landscape.

The picture gradually emerged over the next three hours, during which time the audience came and went, looking at the other artworks, chatting, visiting the house next door, eating. Once the landscape was completed, Chopra stepped out of this constructed English world he had  depicted. Carefully removed his clothes he arranged them on a chair in front of the drawing, leaving a his ghostly shell before the red world he had created 

There was a very friendly atmosphere, and I was delighted to meet Skinder Hundhal of New Art exchange Harriet Loeffler who used to curate Norwich castle and is now curator of New Hall’s collection I also got chatting to one of the diretor’s of Chatterjee and Lal, Chopra’s gallerist and one of the biggest galleries in India

The evening finished with a conversation between Chopra and Catherine Wood, head of International Art at the Tate. Chopra is an entertaining and lively talker, and described ‘Rouge’ as an act of siting himself within an illusory English landscape. He and I have common ground in our interest in studio photography, those strange sepia mimic worlds inhabited by stony-faced posers that mark the Westernisation of Indian dress and ways from 1850s.


!!! Next CritClub will be a visit on Friday January 10th at 13.00 to the innovative Norwich gallery Josey  on to see the exhibition by  Peter wachtler Peter Wächtler
14/12/19 – 25/01/20 .



live art, art club, TAP, art group, crit club
International artist Nihkil Chopra performs ‘Rouge” at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge Yard
Crit Club 6

For our next #CritClub we are travelling to Cambridge on Tuesday December 3rd to visit the exhibition ‘Homelands’ and to watch a live performance by the internationally acclaimed artist Nihkil Chopra.There is also talk in the evening between Chopra and Tate curator Catherine Woods.

Please visit the Kettle’s Yard website if you want to book a ticket for the talk in the evening.

Arrangements:  As CritClub is a drop-in event, there are no plans to travel together.  We will make our own ways to Cambridge and meet in the gallery at 2.30, and hold an on-line discussion on @theartpractitioner Facebook page after the event.

Performance: Nikhil Chopra 3–6pm Artist Nikhil Chopra will perform Rouge, a durational live action drawing. FREE, come along

In conversation: Nikhil Chopra with Catherine Wood 7–8.15pm

Join Catherine Wood, Senior Curator, International Art (Performance), Tate Modern, in conversation with artist Nikhil Chopra.

£5 (free for concessions), booking recommended

Co-organised with Hyundai Tate Research Centre: Transnational in partnership with Hyundai Motor


Homelands: Art from Bangladesh, India and Pakistan

Nikhil Chopra 2019–2020 Artist in Residence at The Met