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Emerging Artist at Orleans House Gallery 12 April – 2 June 2024

Orleans house exhibition

Saroj Patel: Ocean Mother

Ocean Mother unveils the untold stories and rich experiences of South Asian mothers. This exhibition looks at how histories, traditions, and culture shape their identities. These remarkable women break boundaries and craft new narratives for South Asian women. 

Through intimate conversations with 26 South Asian women from the UK, visitors will encounter the interplay of migration, culture, race, and gender in their lives. These mothers navigate the complex tapestry of identity through the lens of motherhood. They not only preserve but actively shape their cultural heritage for both themselves and their children.

This exhibition also delves into Saroj’s personal connection with her mother, Sushila. Sushila grew up without a mother but was surrounded by supportive family members in her village of Borsi, India. She then embarked on a transformative journey – she migrated to the UK when she was 19 and become a mother to three children by the time she turned 22.

Saroj’s mother faced struggle, loneliness, and conflict. Yet, her stories are woven together with threads of resilience and courage. Like many women of her era, her experiences inspire the next generation to create new opportunities and more inclusive futures for themselves and their children.

Ocean Mother celebrates heritage and the enduring power of maternal stories. These stories resonate across generations, weaving into the fabric of our shared human experience.

About the artist 

Saroj Patel’s work explores the contrasting and sometimes conflicting identities of a British Indian artist. Her sculptures are a celebration of Indian culture and community. They are also a way for the artist to address her own relationship with her upbringing.

Born in Preston, England, and now based in Oxfordshire, Saroj graduated from Central St Martins with an MA in Fine Art in 2019. That same year she was a finalist in the Hix Award, shortlisted for the Tiffany & Co x Outset Studiomakers Prize, and won the Tension Fine Art Gallery Prize. She was awarded the 2020 Clifford Chance Sculpture Prize, and in 2022 she was awarded the British Arts Council Developing Your Creative Practice Fund.

Her recent group exhibitions include ‘Zari Sona Moti: Glitter Gold Pearl’ at Darle and the Bear in Oxfordshire and ‘Boundless Textiles’ at Broadworks in London. Saroj has taken part in talks, panel discussions, events and workshops at Tate Lates, the National Gallery in London, Art Night, Hix Art and Tate Exchange.

Orleans Road Twickenham TW1 3BL

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