The Art of Diaspora Memory-History: Mapping Geographies of Diaspora, on Canvas
This paper will examine the 'ways of seeing' inscribed in the descriptions of idealised landscapes of South Asian women in North West London. The artist Melanie Carvalho has produced 22 canvases from these descriptions, as part of a collaborative project. These descriptions and canvases are considered as visual expressions of the negotiation of diasporic migration. For the post-colonial South Asian population living in Britain, dis-enfranchisement from a sense of Englishness and English landscape has resulted in new configurations of identification. These configurations are expressed in this landscape project as mediations between 'home' landscapes and Englishness, as well as ways of negotiating different cultures of identification and being. Memory, aesthetics and textures of nature are discussed in the paper as important components of diasporic engagements with landscape as a visual framing of identification with places of belonging, and as an experience of environment, and citizenship within England.
Keywords: Diaspora, Melanie Carvalho, Art, Memory, Landscape
Dr. Divya Praful Tolia-Kelly
University Lecturer, Geography, Durham University