Jasmine Shah Varma

About Jasmine Shah Varma

Jasmine Shah Varma is a Mumbai based art curator and writer. She has been writing extensively on art since 1998 for mainstream publications, art magazines and artist catalogues. Since 2005 she has curated several exhibitions that have both drawn a new audience to the visual arts as well as attracted the attention on seasoned collectors. In terms of curatorial frameworks, her shows have often been a departure from the conventional, showing a willingness to experiment in her collaborations with artists. She has showcased much emerging talent, and has also worked with established artists in thought-provoking curatorial projects. The artists she helped launch into the world of art include Alok Bal, Dilip Chobisa, Shruti Nelson, Soumen Das, Sonatina Mendes, Pradeep Mishra, Malavika Andrew Mandal, Gayatri Gamuz, Debraj Goswami, Sharmi Chowdhury and Kim Kyoungae. She is the Mumbai correspondent for India’s only monthly art magazine Art Etc. Her contributions regularly appear in magazines such as Bombay Art Journal, Art Fair magazine and Elle among others. She has written catalogue essays for many artists. Articles.

Curated Shows

  • 2005 Still Waters Run Deep – The importance and exploration of use of watercolours as a medium by diverse group of artists
  • 2005 In Short – a collaborative project where 20 artists were asked to depict a fictional story in the visual medium in small format
  • 2005 Stirring Quartet I - An introduction to four promising artists in Mumbai
  • 2006 Noah’s Arc – Drawing the attention of the viewers to recurrent use of specific animal and bird motifs by various artists
  • 2006 Stirring Quartet II An introduction to four promising artists in Mumbai
  • 2007 Contemporary Art from South Korea - Co-curated with Kim Kyoungae
  • 2007 Instilling Life – Examined a popular genre of the past that continues to be relevant in the contemporary practices in diverse avatars
  • 2007 Embodied – Exploring why and in what ways the human figure remains a central preoccupation for a select group of artists
  • 2008 Of Bricks and Mortar – Exploring the engagement of contemporary artists with changing topography of our cities and issues arising from it
  • 2008 Of Myths and More – About artists who tap into the vast reservoir mythological stories to express contemporary concerns
  • 2008 Intimate Dialects – Two person show of Sharmi Chowdhury and Shruti Nelson
  • 2009 Nothing Will Ever be the Same Again – 13 perspectives on the show title covering political, social and personal areas of concerns
  • 2009 Card-O-Logy I – Celebrating picture postcards, a visual means of communication that is fading out. 60 artists’ original work on picture postcards.
  • 2010 The Art of Luck: Card-O-Logy II – Original picture postcards by 55 artists painting on the theme of good luck.
  • 2011 Agape – Sculpture exhibition featuring manifestation of wondrous moments
  • 2011 Let There Be Light! A unique concept where artists painted one-off lamp shades made of canvas

Artist solo exhibition representation and curation

Shruti Nelson 2006, 2007, 2011
Haren Vakil 2008, 2011, 2012
Nikhileswar Baruah 2006, 2007, 2009
Kim Kyoungae 2006, 2007, 2010
Soumen Das 2006, 2011
Gayatri Gamuz 2007
Pradeep Mishra 2008
Sonatina Mendes 2009

Catalogue Essays for artists including:

Akbar Padamsee
Gayatri Gamuz
Gurcharan Singh
Haren Vakil
Kim Kyoungae
Lalitha Lajmi
Maya Burman
Nikhil Chaganlal
Nikhileswar Baruah
Payal Khandwala
Pratul Dash
Pradeep Mishra
Shruti Nelson
Soumen Das

Articles about Jasmine

The Art-o-logist
Verve December 2009

'Now what exactly does a curator do?'
Bombay Times October 2009


For any queries about writing or art, please contact Jasmine.