Sonia Mehra Chawla is a visual artist and researcher based in New Delhi, India. She received her BFA (2001) and MFA (2004) in Fine Arts from Delhi University’s College of Art in New Delhi/India. Mehra Chawla has an interdisciplinary practice as an artist, photographer and researcher. She works at the intersection of art, science and technology, and her artistic practice explores notions of selfhood, nature, ecology, sustainability, and conservation. Sonia’s practice is inextricably linked to an ethic, even a politics of multi-species co-existence and co-habitation. The artistic research could itself be seen as a political act, in which she has collaborated with several climate-change scientists, ecologists, oceanologists, microbiologists, as well as fishermen, farmers and indigenous people who speak from their deep reserves of their knowledge systems and traditional wisdom.
Mehra Chawla is a fellow and awardee of the Charles Wallace India Trust of the British Council. Furthermore, she is a fellow of the International Art+ Science program instituted by Khoj International Artists’ Association, supported by Wellcome Trust UK/DBT India Alliance. Mehra Chawla was awarded a long term International fellowship and residency in the area of social sciences by Akademie Schloss Solitude, Germany in 2019, for the art, science and business program of the academy. Her forthcoming solo project in the UK in 2021 has been supported by Edinburgh Printmakers, Marine Scotland, Creative Scotland and ASCUS Art & Science, Edinburgh.
Mehra Chawla’s work has been exhibited at the Institut Fur Auslansbeziehungen, ifa Galerie, Stuttgart/Germany (2017); Yinchuan Biennale, MOCA Yinchuan/China (2016); Embassy of Switzerland, New Delhi/India (2019), Essl Museum of Contemporary Art, Vienna/Austria (2011); Khoj International Artists Association, Delhi/India (2018); 1X1 Art Gallery, Dubai/UAE (2020), Goethe Institut, Mumbai/India (2017); British Council, New Delhi/India (2015); Tate Modern, London/UK (2006-07); ET4U Contemporary Visual Art Projects, Denmark/Scandinavia (2017); Museum of Contemporary Art, Yinchuan/China (2016); CSMVS Museum, Mumbai/India (2010); Today Art Museum, Beijing/China (2008); Beck & Eggeling International, Dusseldorf/Germany (2015); Sydney Contemporary 13, Sydney/Australia (2013); 10 Chancery Lane Gallery, Hong Kong (2013), Art Basel/ Hong Kong (2013); Project Stage Asia Pacific/Art Stage Singapore (2011) and Shanghai Contemporary/China (2009).
Forthcoming projects include ‘Earth Gardens’, a research based multi-media project at Akademie Schloss Solitude, Germany in collaboration with Botanischer Garten & Botanishes Museum, Berlin (2022). Sonia’s work can be found in the Albertina Museum Collection in Vienna/Austria.