Zarina Hashmi, commonly known as Zarina, was born in 1937 in a Muslim family from Northern India. She married an Indian officer working for international diplomatic organizations and travelled to cities, countries and continents that forever imprinted her work of a sophisticated fabric of diagrams and maps embodying the memory of a place, of an event, the memory of an atmosphere or of an experienced instant. At the crossroads of paths between architecture, sculpture, and xylography, her numerous engravings on wood, mural installations or casts sculpted in paper pulp accompany her journey in connecting the innumerable cities she visited. Paper is at the center of Zarina’s artistic creation. Her art is at the same time contained in its minimalistic character and rich in the tactile quality of the materials and its dense signification. This work is like a poignant chronicle of her life and recurring themes include home, displacement, borders, journey and memory with a constant reference to the notion of dislocation and cosmopolitanism. All these works are the expressions of a personal atlas, vast and multiple paths across continents and civilizations.
Zarina Hashmi’s work is included in major international institutions such as the MoMA, the Whitney and the Metropolitan Museums in New York. In 2011, the gallery presented her first solo show in Paris, entitled “Noor”, with a selection of works on paper, recent installations and early cast paper sculptures from the 80s. In 2012, the Hammer Museum hosted a major retrospective. Entitled “Zarina: Paper Like Skin”, the show then traveled to the Guggenheim, New York and the Chicago Art Institute. An exhibition catalogue was published with reproduction of nearly 60 works from 1961 to the present.