Heritage is proud to present two exceptional artists who are second to none
born twin sisters Amrit and Rabindra are contemporary British artists of International
standing whose award winning paintings have been acknowledged as constituting
a unique genre in British Art and for initiating a new movement in the revival
of the Indian miniature tradition within modern art practice. Describing their
work as Past - Modern (as opposed to Post Modern), their work engages with important
areas of critical debate - challenging existing stereotypes and redefining generally
accepted, narrow perceptions of heritage and identity in art and society. Combining
elements from Western and Eastern aesthetics they assert the value of traditional
and non European art forms to the continuing development of Contemporary Art practice
- exploring cultural, social and political issues of global significance within
a highly decorative, often witty and symbolic style which has universal appeal
and transcends cultural barriers.
With paintings in
private and public collections world wide the Singh Twins continue to be invited
to speak on their work at institutions such as the Tate Gallery, London; The Art
Gallery of Ontario, Canada; The National Museum of Modern Art in Delhi and Mumbai;
the University of California, Santa Barbara and the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco.
At the same time a significant interest from academics, individual art students
and University research graduates has resulted in their work being incorporated
into the Open University syllabus and other sectors of Britains formal education
As well as being profiled in
numerous main stream publications including the Penguin History of Scotland and
Marg Publications New Insights into Sikh Art, their work is featured in
two fine art books (Twin Perspectives and Past Modern) and has been selected for
the next Pocket Art Series by Roli books.
attracted International media attention, Radio and Television appearances include
interviews for BBCs Womens Hour, Mid Week and Belief; CBCs Here
and Now and the Granada TV documentary Singh Out Sisters. An independently commissioned
Arts Council film about their work, (Alone Together) received 'The
Best Film On Art' prize at the 2001 A solo International Film Festival. In the
same year they were short-listed for the Asian Women of Achievement Awards (in
the category of Arts & Culture) and in 2002 were appointed official Artists
in Residence to the Manchester Commonwealth Games. The work they produced in response
to the Games gained wide publicity and was even featured as a question on Who
Wants to Be A Millionaire?
In 2002 their
Arts Council England, British Council and Air Indian sponsored solo India tour
was launched at the National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi - making them the
only British artists (besides Henry Moore) to have been offered a solo show at
this, one of Indias foremost venues for Contemporary Art. In 2003 their
work toured USA and Canada. Future plans include exhibitions in New Zealand and
Our art and collaborative partnership developed largely in
response to the serious criticisms we faced during our first degree for pursuing
common interests and goals in developing personal styles which were not only deemed
to be unacceptable because of their similarity, but because they were 'inappropriately'
rooted in Eastern cultural aesthetics and our experience as British Asians.
Against this hostility our determined exploration of the Indian
miniature style and established practice of working and exhibiting together (as
well as dressing identically), is a political statement against the hypocrisy
of an establishment which advocated self expression as the be all and end
all of Modern Art, yet denied the validity of anything which did not comply
with the expectations dictated by a selective, Eurocentric perspective. Whilst
asserting the right to define our own cultural and artistic individuality
in a way that is meaningful and true to who we are as British Asians, artists
and twins our work, more importantly, redresses the need to re evaluate established
cultural definitions, values and role models within the wider context of an evolving
global society dominated by western consumer markets and popular culture. This
is because ultimately, our artistic strategy is defined by a sense of responsibility
to look beyond personal issues of identity towards exposing wider cultural prejudices
and highlighting other concerns of more global significance. The desire to make
a real difference through our work has fuelled our determination in establishing
an international profile that demands acceptance on our own terms creating
a recognised platform for serious debate which has meaningful impact in challenging
pervading social, political and cultural attitudes.
amongst the freshest of the new British artists" (Daily Telegraph)
Rabindra and Amrit are twin sisters of Indian origin who have continued to work
and exhibit widely over the past decade both in the UK and abroad. Born in London,
in 1966, they moved with their family to Wirral, Merseyside in 1974 where they
are now based. They received a Roman Catholic education at a local Convent school
with the initial intention of following a vocation in Medicine. Their career in
art developed quite by
chance when unforeseen circumstances pushed them instead
to both read for a BA Hons. in Ecclesiastical History, Comparative Religion and
Contemporary Western Art History in 1985-87. It was during this period that the
Twins began to develop their unique style of painting largely in rebellion against
the intense pressure they experienced to conform to Western models of contemporary
art. They drew inspiration from the Indian Miniature tradition which captivated
them some five years earlier when they visited India for the first time. By 1987
they had established this tradition as the most pertinent means of expressing
their artistic and cultural identity. Whilst continuing to develop their chosen
art form they went on to do postgraduate studies into popular and traditional
Sikh art, each winning a highly competitive INTACH (Indian National Trust For
Art And Cultural Heritage) scholarship in 1990 to carry out a year's field research
in India. Taking a break from their research in 1992 they have since steadily
built up a reputation as accomplished artists, receiving international media coverage
and numerous awards for their paintings. Described as "both challenging and
fascinating" (Dr Swallow, Victoria and Albert Museum) and as "some of
the most optimistic images of our Multi-cultural world" (The Guardian), the
Twins' paintings can be found in both private and public collections world wide.
In 1994 they were elected as members of the Manchester Academy of Fine Arts.
they began exhibiting in 1987, their works have appeared in group shows at prime
UK venues. These include The Mall Gallery (1993/94), The National Portrait Gallery
(1995), London's Cork Street (1996) and the Whitechapel Gallery, London, as part
of the widely publicised Arts Council of Great Britain touring show Krishna the
Divine Lover (1997). Solo shows include: The Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool (1994);
Salford City Art Gallery (1994/5); Cartwright Hall, Bradford (1996); the Harris
Museum, Preston (1997); a residency at Liverpool's Walker Art Gallery (1997) and
a major UK tour from early 1999 - mid 2000 at various established galleries including
Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery and the Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art. From
late 1997 -early 1998 the Twins also toured Switzerland and France in an international
group show with other selected top artists from Merseyside. In September 1998
they represented Liverpool painters again in the Cologne Festival of Liverpool
Arts, Germany, and received invitations to exhibit at Paris in January 1999 and
Amsterdam in 2000.
They have given several TV and Radio interviews and are
the sole subject of two documentaries about their work: the first, a short film
commissioned by The Arts Council of England follows the progress of a painting
based on Princess Diana and the second, a Granada TV half hour documentary which
formed one in a series of programs highlighting the cutting edge of the arts in
the North West. Journal, maga:ine and newspaper coverage of their work includes
articles and reviews in The Guardian, The Daily Telegraph, The Independent, India
Today, Artist and Illustrator, The Artist, The Calcutta Telegraph and The Scottish
Herald. They feature in Women of Substance - a book on successful Asian women
in Britain - and were nominated to be profiled in Asians in the Millennium - the
definitive Who's Who of Asians in Britain. In 1998 they received a commission
from the Sikh Foundation in America to write on illustrated book of poems (inspired
hy a small selection of their paintings) as part ot the 1999 international tercentenary
celebrations ot a major historical Sikh event - (the founding of the Khalsa in
In addition their works have gained wide public attention as well as
significant interest from specific art audiences, especially fine art and design
students at all levels who have used the Twins' work as case studies and inspiration
for their own research and personal artistic development. They continue to be
invited to give illustrated lectures on their work and have conducted educational
workshops on different aspects ot Indian art and culture. In 1997 their personal
interest in, and dedication to promoting Indian art led to them curating Zindabad
1997 - a major festival of South East Asian Arts (including traditional and
contemporary Indian visual and performance arts, cinema and community events)
celebrating 50 years of Indian independence. (Artists' Biography taken with
thanks from 'Twin Perspectives' ) For more information log on to their web site:
TWINS have not been short of awards and many more are in store for this talented
duo in the near future. Some of the AWARDS
presented to them are listed here:-
and Guilds of the City of Chester Award for Creative Endeavour.
Oakley (St Peter's Saltley) Award.
1987 Freeman and Guilds of the City of
Chester Award for Creative Endeavour.
1989 BBC North West 6th Open Annual
Art Competition 'Special Category Award' for 'Pupoo in The Kitchen', and 'Vidaya'
(Salford City Art Gallery)
1990-1 INTACH Scholarship award for Postgraduate
study field research (India) into Sikh Art.
1991 Punjab Academy of Great Britain,
Board of Academic Studies 'Honorary Award for outstanding contribution to Punjabi
1990 British Linen Bank Award (Manchester Academy of Fine Exhibition)
1993 Bank of Scotland Award (Manchester Academy of Fine Art Exhibition)
for 'Morning Char'.
1993 Emerson Development Award (Manchester Academy of
Fine Art Exhibition) for 'Wedding Jange'(No.2) (Inter phase).
1993 Mall Gallery
Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colour and Windsor & Newton Young Artist
Award, finalist for 'Interior with Dome'.
1994 Manchester Evening News Award
(Manchester Academy of Fine Art Open Exhibition) for 'Les Girls'.
Gallery' Manchester House of Art Award for Technical Excellence (Manchester Academy
of Fine Art Exhibition) for 'All That I Am'.
1994 Mall Gallery Royal institute
of Painters in Water Colour and Windsor & Newton Young Artist Award, Finalists
for ' Wedding Jange' (no. 2) & ' Morning Char'.
1994 North West Arts Board
'Individual Artist's Development Award'.
1995 Award for Most Outstanding Two-Dimensional
Work (St. Helens Open Art Exhibition) for 'The Last Supper'.
1995 'The Artist'
Painting From Photographs Competition, Third Prize for 'Indian Street Scene.'
1996 P & P plc. Open Award ( Manchester Academy of Fine Arts Open Exhibition
) for 'Our Father'.
1996 North West Arts Board 'Travel Bursary Award' for
'artistic' promotional trip to America.
1996 Countess Enid Driscol - Spalletti
Prize for watercolour (Royal Overseas League13th Annual Open Exhibition) for 'Nyrmla's
1997 Nominee for 'Best New Talent' in the Merseyside Arts
And Entertainment Awards
RADIO AND TELEVISION
'Radio Merseyside' interview, Jan.
1996 West Midlands - Asian Network Radio
Interview, 16th Feb.
1996 'BBC Television' interview for Midlands Today's
'Arts File', 29th Feb.
1996 'Birmingham Cable TV' magazine program interview,
1997 'Radio Merseyside interview', 'Zindabad' Festival of Asian
Arts exhibition, 5th August.
1997 Radio Merseyside interview, 'Zindabad' Festival
of Asian Arts exhibition, 13th August.
1997 'Liverpool Live' Cable TV interview,
'Zindabad' Festival of Asian Arts, 19th August.
1997 'Radio Merseyside' interview,
'Zindabad' Festival of Asian Arts, 12th September.
1998 'Channel 1, London
Cable TV interview ('Twin Images II' exhibition), February.
Radio, Birmingham exhibition preview, 18th June.
1998 'BBC Radio Asian Network';
Drive time', live radio interview on Princess Diana
1998 'Granada T.V'; Granada
Tonight,' live feature on Princess Diana painting and 'Entwined',Thursday 29th
1999 'Granada TV'; Granada Tonight, news feature, 24th November.
'Granada TV', half hour, NWA documentary; Singh Out Sister'; 11th December
'Radio MFM' News feature, Friday 11th December.
1999 'BBC Radio Asian Network',live
interview with Sonia Dial, 25th January
1999 'BBC Radio Asian Network'; Drive
Time, live feature, 16th March.
1999 'BBC Television'; Midlands Today, news
feature, 18th March.
1999 'BBC Radio 4'; Midweek interview (with Libby Purves,
Don McCullin and Chris Eubank), Wed. 14th April
1999 'Central and CarltonTV';
Eastern Mix magazine program feature.
1999 'A Twin Perspective'; Arts Council
Of England commissioned documentary film.
1999 Huddersfield radio FM, Interview
1999 BBC Radio 4, 'Front Row' Arts program with Mark Lawson, invited guest
to preview the TV program 'Secret Lives of Twins', 12th July.
1999 Hive Production,
outreach video presentation for the 'enTWINed' exhibition at Huddersfield Gallery.
1999 Asian Television Marketing, profile of enTWINed,3rd October
Radio Merseyside, Arts file with Angela Heslop, Liverpool Biennial and enTWINed
review, 8th October
1999 Scottish Television, Seven Days Arts program, 14th
1999 BBC Radio Scotland, 'The Brian Morton Show', interview/review
of EnTWINed, 17th November
are proud to present some of their masterpieces
The themes of the paintings are so intricate that it is not possible in the web
pages to show the minute details of the exceptional art work done by the artists):-
Singh's India" by the twins - collection of Glasgow Gallery of Modern Art.
wedding" by Amrit
Eighty Four" by the twins shown the storming of the Golden Temple
Street Scene" by Rabindra
of Football "Beckham" by the sisters.
jange " by Amrit
by the twins.
Father" by Rabindra