Prerna is a multidisciplinary artist currently based out of Minneapolis, MN. Born in Mumbai in 1995, Prerna moved to Minnesota to study art and completed her BFA at the University of Minnesota in 2018. She is interested in the idea of returning her work back to the “place it belongs” and critiquing the norms of making and presenting in an institutional setting. She was recently awarded a solo show at SooVAC (Minneapolis, MN) through an open call.
I question our need to conceal unseen systems and our compliance with forceful self-categorisation. Through subtle alterations of documents, images, and spaces, I displace normative expectations and evaluate the systemic bias and hierarchy within such institutional systems. In doing so, my practice relies heavily on the materiality of institutional space and works to make invisible labour visible. Currently, I am on a quest to understand and critique why, within the structure of these systems, we are expected to check a box or fill in a blank that determines our identity. When unable to do so, we are forced to misrepresent ourselves.
I often consider the wall as a metaphor for transparency. Though it is commonly thought to block or segregate, my laboring on, replication, documentation, and illusory presentations of the wall seek to blur the line between falsehood and reality. In blurring this line, I present a form of clarity that contradicts the facade that is typically presented. My futile attempts to rectify the system, even though I am participating in it, refers directly to my identity as a non-resident alien without a last name while still providing assigned last names in order to proceed within a form. Futility is an important concept in my practice. I play on the idea of "filling out a form,” for instance, by laser etching into drywall and using spackle to answer the prompts— redacting, erasing, and in a sense finishing the wall as I refill the surface. I set conditions for my projects that are intended for the end result to counteract my alterations and restore the material back to its original state. My work happens after the condition has been set and before it has been fulfilled.
These systems exude hierarchical power and rely on expendability, impermanence, and catergorisation to maintain a permanent state of temporariness for an individual. This temporariness then translates into the labour that I perform, the place which I occupy, and the state of my being: a non-resident alien who does not have a last name.