DEBASHISH PAUL (b. 1994)
Debashish Paul born in 1994 is a contemporary sculptor whose critical work explores the problems of queer identity in a society dominated by heterosexual norms. After graduating from The Indian college of Art and Draftsmanship, Kolkata, Debashish is presently pursuing a master’s degree from Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi. He seeks to expand and explore the tabooed conception of homosexuality by unveiling the body, treating it as a tender landscape and generating new references to queer identities. Working in the method of automatism, he does not use any layout, expressing his private emotions and sensibilities freely and without any control of prior thought. Debashish is careful in choosing materials for his works. His recent sculptural dresses, which indicate no specific gender orientation, male or female, are, in fact, the sensible screens, which both conceal and reveal his fragile emotions and desires, always in conflict with the society.
Paul performed live at The Prince Claus Fund Biennial Symposium 2023, Sri Lanka; Open Day Performance at Cite Internationale des Arts, Paris, 2023 as part of PRAF Artist in Residence; India Art Fair 2023, New Delhi; French Institute of India, New Delhi, India; Residency and Performance Art Program curated by HH Art Space Foundation and Nikhil Chopra in collaboration with Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2022-23, Kochi, India. He is also a recipient of the 2022-23 Prince Claus Seed Fund; Kalanad Scholarship 2022 – 23 from the Prafulla Dahanukar Art Foundation; 2022 Inlaks Fine Art Award, Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation; Allegro 1st prize 2021, Contemporary LYNX, UK; The India Artist Relief Fund-2021 (MAP in partnership with 1Shanthiroad Studio/Gallery). Debashish Paul was part of Art Dusseldorf 2023. He was one of the artists in residence at the India Art Fair 2023. His other notable exhibitions include Beyond Binaries: Sensing Art through Queer Lensing-2021 at KCC, Kolkata; the Student's Biennale -2021, Kochi; Kala Sakshi Workshop-2021, Emami Art Open Call Exhibition -2020, Kolkata; Of Liminal Beings and Other Spaces curated by Ushmita Sahu -2021, Emami Art, Kolkata; The Spring at Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata in 2019.
Paul’s performance video has been selected to screen at the Bowes Museum, UK, as part of the exhibition The Magic of the Silver Swan in 2024. His performance video, Me with My Pet, was screened at the Auditorium, Cite internationale des arts, 18 Rue de I’Hotel de ville, Paris.
Debashish Paul lives and works in Varanasi and Nadia, West Bengal.