Poojan Gupta is an artist and a researcher based in London, UK. She is currently pursuing her second Masters MA Art and Science (2022-24) from Central Saint Martins, University of Arts London and holds a Masters Degree in Fine Art MFA ; from Kala-Bhavana, Visva-Bharati University, India, Bachelors Degree in Visual Art BVA from The IIS University, India, Diploma in Applied Arts from The IIS University, India. She is a current Artist-in-Residence at Oxford Centre of Hindu Studies, Oxford researching in the domain of medicine and religious belief.
Her work has been exhibited several times across India and UK, including ‘All Things Current Are Found’ at Trinity Buoy Wharf, London (2023); ‘Come. Sit. Eat My Flesh’, London Festival of Architecture, CSM, London (2023); ‘WADe Asia Exhibition’, WADe Asia, New Delhi (2022); Letters to Nandalal, Jadunath Bhavan Museum and Resource Centre, Kolkata (2021); EA Locus in Focus 'IMAGINARIUM', Emami Art, Kolkata (2021); International Art Festival, Jaipur (2018); Art Exhibition, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Office, New Delhi (2016); 37th Chatrakala Pradarshani, Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy, Jaipur (2016) to name a few. To mark her contribution in the domain of Art she has been awarded ‘Radhey Shyam Badhalia Memorial Gold Medal’ and ‘Shiv Saraswati Memorial Gold Medal’ by The IIS University, India. Her article ‘Remaking Reality’ has been featured by The Curator Magazine, and works by University of Arts London, Creativity-I, The Science Magazine of Imperial College London with multiple features for her achievements in Surface Reporter Magazine.
As we navigate the world of packaging, it navigates us. In this sense, the act of discarding a pharmaceutical blister pack is tied to larger questions about everyday human existence. For example, polyethylene terephthalate pill packets are not recyclable, they end up in countless landfill sites throughout the UK and India. Poojan Gupta finds herself responding to this environmental emergency, not through direct action, but as an artist who engages creatively with the quantity of medical waste we produce every day since 2019. And it is her own culture's daily use of ritual and sacred offerings which suggests to her that, when handled meaningfully, these disposable packets take on a significance of their own. Something is intuited. There are aesthetic and ethical qualities that exceed ordinary functions and human control. She is captivated by the punctured and buckled surfaces of blister packs which has developed as her primary sculptural medium, and it is the sensation of touch that focuses and motivates her work. Gupta transforms these tactile experiences into a visual arts language using a version of Marvin Minsky’s 'frame theory': ‘by changing the context in which something is represented, its meaning and our response to it also change’ (1975). With this idea in mind, she has developed a way of making empty medicine packets sculpturally ‘strange’ through recontextualization. She strives to make her studio experiments visually striking and, ultimately, she wants to create a contemporary vision of consumer society's intense relationship with medication.