Otago Polytechnic

Dunedin artist Arati Kushwaha can’t wait to take up a prestigious month-long residency in the United States in March. 

She has been accepted for the 2020 Artist in Residence at Vermont Studio Centre, Johnson, United States.  

“I am super-excited by this opportunity to familiarise myself with the US art scene and cultural environment and meeting so many artists and writers.” 

As well as having her accommodation, meals and travel expenses covered (CHECK) thanks to the generous support of the Jan Warburton Charitable Trust, Kushwaha will have be joined by more than 50 artists and writers from the United States and around the world and attend a range of lectures. 

The March 1 to March 27 residency and ends March 27, 2020.  

Arati, who was born in Maharashtra, India, completed a Postgraduate Certificate in Visual Art at Otago Polytechnic’s Dunedin School of Art in 2015, then returned to complete a Master of Visual Art (2018), majoring in sculpture. 

Last year, she was accepted as the 2019 Artist in Residence with KulturKontakt Austria. She beat 800 international applicants for the prestigious three-month placement. 

“I think any residency works well if there is some active collaboration, that the artist feels something has happened or changed, knowledge is gained. Place and people, too, have a certain impact,” Arati says.  

“More importantly, the Vermont Studio Centre residency will give me time and space to develop my artistic practice.  I contextualize my practice by looking around at current exhibitions. Researching artist works will inform my research strategies and group show participation will enable my work to stand in contrast with others.” 

On finishing the residency, Arati will return to Dunedin, where she will continue to focus on gender equity and education. 

“Gender, identity, sexuality, femininity, self-induced abortion and destruction have been persistent themes throughout my life.  

“Collectively, in all human societies, women’s sexuality has often been portrayed as something scary, weird, threatening and terrifyingly abject, more monster than human.”  

Read more about our art programmes 

Published on 12 Feb 2020

Orderdate: 12 Feb 2020
Expiry: 31 Mar 2020