Chila Kumari Singh Burman
The Deptford Mermaid - Workshop
Join Chila to create a collaborative collage inspired by the Deptford Mermaid.
The Deptford Mermaid is inspired by Deptford’s dockyard history and the community’s historic relationship with the River Thames. From the 16 – 20th century figureheads of mermaids were mounted on the bow of ships as good luck charms as they were said to calm turbulent waters. Chila has created The Deptford Mermaid as a token of good luck for the people of Deptford as we come out of the Pandemic, knowing that this will not be the last storm we weather together.
The workshop is free and you can drop in and spend as much time as you would like contributing to the large scale collage.
Chila Kumari Singh Burman is celebrated for her radical feminist practice which examines representation, gender and cultural identity. She works across a wide range of mediums including printmaking, drawing, painting, installation and film.
Born in Bootle, to Punjabi-Hindu parents, she attended Southport College of Art, Leeds Polytechnic and the Slade School of Fine Art. A key figure in the British Black Arts movement in the 1980s, Burman has since remained rooted in her understating of the diverse nature of culture. Continually seeking to break stereotypes and emancipate the image of women, she often uses self-portraiture as a tool of empowerment and self-determination.
More recently Burman was selected as the fourth artist to complete the Tate Britain Winter Commission in 2020. The resulting hugely popular installation Remembering A Brave New World, addressed the colonial history of Tate Britain and its Eurocentric position. Adorning the gallery façade with references to Indian mythology, popular culture, female empowerment, political activism and colonial legacy. Exposing a need for better informed conversations and more effective strategies for tackling racism in the art world and wider society.
In 2017, she was awarded an Honorary Doctorate and Honorary Fellowship from the University of Arts in London. And has exhibited widely with notable solo shows held at Middlesbrough Institute of Modern Art (MIMA), Middlesbrough; Output Gallery, Liverpool and Tate Britain, London. Her works are also represented in many museums and public galleries including Tate, London; Wellcome Trust, London; British Council; Victoria and Albert Museum, London; Science Museum, London and Arts Council Collection, England.
Chila Kumari Singh Burman lives and works in London, England.