Raka Panda

Raka Panda is an Indian artist whose work transcends the boundaries of everyday experiences, creating an alternative reality through her art. Born and raised in a Bengali, lower-middle-class household, Raka draws on her rich cultural heritage and childhood memories in her artistic practice. Her grandmother's Kantha work, using old clothes, left a lasting impression on her, inspiring Raka to explore themes of daily experiences, wonder, and questioning through her art.

Raka completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) in 2014 and Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in 2016 from Kala Bhavana, Visva Bharati, Santiniketan. Her work has been recognized and awarded by several prestigious institutions. In 2020, she was awarded by Emergent Art Space for the curated online show 'Calling Across the Distance'. She received the Junior Fellowship by the Ministry of Culture in 2018-2019 and won the West Bengal State Award from the Prafulla Dahanukar Art Foundation in 2018. Additionally, Raka was granted support from The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation in 2015.

Raka has participated in numerous residencies, including the Space Studio Monsoon Residency (2022, Baroda), Kalakriti Artist Residency (2019, Hyderabad), and the Kanoria Centre for Arts Painting Studio Residency with fellowship (2016-2018). She was also part of the New Grammar Collaborative Residency at Artichol in M.P., India, curated by Rahul Kumar in 2017.

Her group exhibitions include 'Lines, Stains, Grids & Words' at Delhi Art Week 2024, the Space Studio Alumni Show 2023 in Baroda, 'Lost Fragrance of Infinity' Fundraiser Show curated by Saloni Doshi at Space 118 in Mumbai (2023), 'On the Threshold of Time' at Art Heritage in Delhi (2023), 'Metireal' at Priyasri Art Gallery, Kamalnayan Bajaj Hall in Mumbai (2022), 'Separation' at M.S.U Gallery, Vadodara (2022), 'Myth, Memory & Marvellous Realities' at Kalakriti Art Gallery in Hyderabad (2021), and 'IN Transit' at Hutheesing Art Gallery in Ahmedabad (2021).

She has also showcased her work internationally in 'Art Revolution Taipei' (2019), Asian Biennale Bangladesh (2018), and a curated show 'Last Image Show' in Tanzania, South Africa (2018), among others.

Raka's art delves into the narratives of common people, exploring their daily lives and experiences. She uses diverse surfaces and mediums, including fabric prints and old bed covers, to evoke the mood and stories she wishes to convey. Her work is a blend of empathy and curiosity, reflecting on the journey of ordinary people through their everyday activities.

Currently, Raka Panda lives and works in Ahmedabad, continuing to create art that resonates with the experiences of the common man, blending personal history with broader social narratives.