Tejal Shah – The Incidental Self



“One instead of two...

Consider whether this is what you desire, whether it would satisfy you to obtain this.”


-excerpt from There is a spider living between us, single channel video, colour & b/w with sound, 6:45 min, 2009


In her work, the Indian artist Tejal Shah deals with questions arising out of the strictly guarded gender duality. Many of her works - performances, videos, installations, drawings - explore the coincidental nature of gender and body, the social and cultural determinations of sexuality, as well as the subsequent marginalizations and the milieus of the rebellious outcasts.


The artist’s intimate approach is at the same time personal and universal, often articulating - though always with irony, humour and criticality - the human desire to become whole by reuniting with one’s original half.


Tejal Shah (born 1979 in Bhilai, India) lives and works in Bombay. Her works have been exhibited at Centre Pompidou, Paris; MAXXI, Rome; Serpentine Gallery, London and at the Documenta 13, Kassel, 2012.


The film focuses on her works presented at the solo exhibition The Incidental Self at Barbara Gross Gallery, Munich, 2011 and a lively and fascinating conversation with Hans Ulrich Obrist, in which Tejal Shah talks about her art, her background and the contemporary Indian art scene.


English / 41:30 minutes / 16:9 PAL /  PCM Stereo



Jacqueline Kaess-Farquet


Wolfgang Lanzenberger / Jacqueline Kaess-Farquet


Peter Melitopulos

Assistant Director / sound recording:

Isabelle Verreet


© Independent Artfilms JKF 2012

© For the artworks: Tejal Shah