Anoli Perera, an artist largely self-taught she pursued her art training in stone carving at the Artworks: The Visual Art School of Princeton for Continuing Education, New Jersey, USA. She has been practicing as a visual artist for over 25 years and have exhibited her art extensively. 2002, she received a Visiting Artist Residency at the University of Wollongong in Australia as well as a residency at the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum in Japan. Same year she was invited to participate in the Fukuoka Art Triennale, Japan. Her work was shown in art events such as Art Basel (Hong Kong), India Art Fair and Colombo Art Biennale many times. Her art consisting of large installations, paintings, sculpture and more recently photo-performances has been shown in many international art events.
She has been part of the wave of artists in the 1990s who have professed a new ideological position in the art production in relation to the contemporary art knowledge and social context in Sri Lanka. Hailed as the pioneering contemporary women artist in Sri Lanka who ushered in art that is informed by feminism and craft art practices, her work engages critically on thematic that range from women’s issues, history, myth to identity, colonialism and post-colonial anxieties. Her writings on contemporary Sri Lankan art have been published in number of publications including Art Asia Pacific (Australia), South Asia Journal for Culture (Sri Lanka), Frontline (India), Asian Art Archive (Hong Kong) and numerous art catalogs and books on Sri Lankan artists.
Anoli Perera is a co-founder and a director of the Theertha International Artists Collective, a progressive art initiative based in Colombo which maintains an experimental art space Red Dot Gallery. She currently lives and works in New Delhi, India.
My current art practice includes painting, sculpting and installation art. My work incorporate the concept of ‘bricolage’ where fragments from different written texts, raw materials, objects and painted surfaces are juxtaposed together giving a textured surface. They also transcend the two dimensional aspect of painting. At present I use cloth, thread, lace and paper as raw material for my sculptures and installations. My subject matter always comes out of various situations and experiences in the social context I lives in. As such, my work reflects certain social and political issues relevant to the context of my living. My work has evolved around the subjects of ‘domesticity, body, memory, history, post coloniality and urbanity ’.