Chicago exhibition to spotlight South Asian miniature art

South Asian artists revive traditional miniature painting by merging it with contemporary themes

Rishika Bhardwaj

Credit: Hundal Collection exhibition banner / Image - South Asia Institute, Chicago

A new exhibition featuring the works of contemporary South Asian artists will open at the South Asia Institute in Chicago on Sept. 28.

Titled "Materials, Metaphors, and Miniatures: Selected Works from the Hundal Collection," the exhibition will explore the revival of traditional miniature painting, once an integral part of Mughal art. The art form has experienced a resurgence in the modern era. 

Miniature painting has deep roots in the cultural heritage of South Asia but suffered a decline due to imperial patronage and the influence of British colonialism. The exhibition, featuring works from the Hundal Collection, spotlights artists at the forefront of this global movement in contemporary miniature painting. 

“These artists merge tradition into contemporary art, exploring diverse forms and offering commentary on societal and political issues through traditional miniature art,” the institute said.

“Through their creations, the exhibition underscores the dynamic nature of South Asian miniature painting, evolving and adapting to the contemporary context,” it added.