Avantika Bawa

About the Installation

Site Location: Willow-Witt Ranch
Title: A Yellow Scaffold On the Ranch

A Yellow Scaffold On the Ranch is the sixth installation of the ‘Scaffold Series’. Here utilitarian scaffolds are transformed by color and context into formal sculpture, as they cease to be objects of function. This transformation is realized by painting them bright yellow, and consciously choreographing their install on Willow-Witt Ranch nestled in a valley in the Cascade mountain range. Yellow, the dominant, and only color in the installation is directly connected to growth and life. A Yellow Scaffold On the Ranch serves as a symbol of hope as we move past these trying times, while also bringing a burst of cheer to those who gaze at it amidst the pastoral background.

About the Artist

Avantika Bawa is an artist, curator, and educator based in Portland, OR, and often resides in her hometown, New Delhi, India.

Bawa has an MFA in Painting from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a BFA in the same from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, India.

She has participated in the Skowhegan, MacDowell, Kochi Biennial Foundation, and Djerassi residencies among others. Noteworthy solo exhibits include shows at: The Portland Art Museum, Schneider Museum, Ashland, OR: Suyama Space, Seattle, WA, The Columbus Museum, GA, Saltworks Gallery, and the Atlanta Contemporary Arts Center, Atlanta, GA: Nature Morte, and Gallery Maskara, India: White Box, Tilt Gallery & Project Space, and Disjecta, Portland, OR.

In April 2004 she was part of a team that launched Drain – Journal for Contemporary Art and Culture. www.drainmag.com. In 2014 Avantika was appointed to the board of the Oregon Arts Commission. She is currently Associate Professor of Fine Arts at Washington State University, Vancouver, WA.


Connect with the Artist


Artist Statement

My practice emphasizes the intersections where drawing and sculpture, stasis and motion, and the functional and non-functional intermingle. Geographic and architectural differences in landscape strongly inform my work. I explore the diversity of topographies, the presence or absence of color in local environments, and the range of visual and tactile qualities of locally sourced and fabricated materials.

Bearing in mind a location’s prior use, I create wall drawings and/or paintings, and repurpose and rearrange functional objects to create temporary installations on-site. My approach is influenced by Minimalism and its emphasis on reductive form, modularity, and experimentation with scale. I gather and compose industrial products like brick, plywood, and concrete, simulating common gestures, such as sitting, leaning, pulling, and stacking. These installations invite the viewer to experience the crossroads between the utilitarian, historical, and aesthetic qualities of each space.

In addition to site-based works, I have a sustained drawing practice. Often these are preliminary studies, or a response to my installations, while the majority are stand-alone pieces. These drawings are deliberative yet whimsical, as I work with the pure physicality of line, shape, surface and color.

Related Events

Thursday, June 3rd at 12:30pm
Virtual Creative Industries Discussion: Avantika Bawa
Site: Virtual

Saturday, June 5th, 4pm
Performance with Left Edge Percussion
Site: Willow-Witt Ranch

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