RIYAS KOMU (b. 1971, Kerala, India) Co-founder of the Kochi Biennale Foundation. Co-curator, Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2012. Director of Programmes, Kochi-Muziris Biennale 2014.
Born in Kerala in 1971, Riyas studied at Sir. J.J. School of Art, Mumbai, and completed his MFA from there too. An internationally renowned visual artist, Riyas Komu is the Secretary of the Kochi Biennale Foundation and Director of Programmes of the inaugural Kochi-Muziris Biennale.
As an artist, his works have been exhibited extensively in India, France, Italy, Korea, Indonesia, USA, UAE, The Netherlands, Germany, South America among many others. He often thematically explores the political and cultural history of Kerala.
In 2007, he was one of two artists from India to be selected by curator Robert Storr for the Venice Biennale. He has exhibited in a variety of institutions including: the GEM Museum for Contemporary Art, The Hague, The Netherlands, Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo, Norway and the Shanghai Museum of Contemporary Art, China. His works have also been on view at the Centre Pompidou, Paris, in the Paris-Delhi-Bombay exhibition in June 2011.
Bachelors in Fine Arts & Masters in Fine Arts from Sir J.J. School of Art, Mumbai
2012: Condition / Duroohatha, Kashi Art Gallery, Kochi 2010: SUBRATO to CÉSAR, Gallery Maskara, Mumbai (Solo show) 2010: SAFE TO LIGHT, Azad Gallery, Tehran, Iran (Solo show) 2010: INSIDE INDIA, Palazzo Saluzzo di Paesana, Torino, Italy 2010: Beyond Globalization, Beyond Art Space, Beijing, China 2009: SAKSHI Art Gallery, Mumbai India 2008: RELATED LIST, Bodhi, Berlin, Germany 2008: MARK HIM (Second half), Gallery 88, Kolkotta 2007: MARK HIM (First Half), The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai 2006: SYSTEMATIC CITIZEN, Palette Art Gallery, New Delhi 2006: FAITH ACCOMPLI, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai 2005: THE THIRD DAY, Lalit Kala Academy, Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi presented by Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai 2005: GRASS, photography show, The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai 2003: SARASU, photography show on Raja Ravi Verma Press, The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai 2002: UNCONDITIONAL, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai 2002 – 2003: AMBULANCE, Renaissance Art Gallery, Bangalore
Selected Group Exhibitions:
2014 “Deconstructed Innings” A tribute to India’s greatest sporting icon, Curated by Kiran Desai and Veeranganakumari Solanki, NGMA, Mumbai “The Missing Pavilion”, Curated by Gayatri Sinha for JNU, New Delhi “Devotion / Truth In Service of Art” Curated by Ina Puri for Gallery Art Positive, New Delhi. “Et in Arcadia Ego” at Nature Morte Gallery, New Delhi. “Indian Art Fair” New Delhi, represented by The Guild Gallery, Mumbai. 2013 “When High and Low Art Meet” being curated by Rupika Chawla for Art Alive Gallery, New Delhi. “Insportsration” being curated by Sean for Project Fullfill Art Space, Taipei, Taiwan. “Peak Shift Effect” being curated by Gayatri Sinha for Vadhera Art Gallery, New Delhi
2012 Exhibited at “INDIA – LADO A LADO”, [India – Side by Side], for SESC Belenzinho and Centro Cultural Banco do Brasil, curated by Terezo de Arruda. “Contemporary Indian Art” being curated by Chaitanya Sambrani for 2012 edition of Art Chennai White Ghost and the red carpet at “The Contemporary Sultanate” show, curated by Veerangana Solanki at Exhibit 320, New Delhi.
2011 2011-Inde, Centre Pompidou, Paris, France 2011: Contemporary Art from India, Helsinki Art Museum – The Tennis Palace, Helsinki, Finland
2011 Exhibited at Jogja Biennale, Indonesia, in November 2011 Pompidou Centre, Paris, France, 2011 “Of Gods and Goddesses” cinema, Cricket- The new cultural icons of India” curated by Arshiya Lokhandwala,..Jahangir Art Gallery, Mumbai.
2010 India Awakens – Under the Banyan Tree, Essl Museum, Vienna, Austria Midnight’s Children, Studio la Città, Verona, Italy Gwangju Biennale 2010, Gwangju, Korea Art Taipei, Taipei Art Amsterdam, Amsterdam Contested Space – Incursions, curated by Heidi Fichtner, Gallery Seven Art Limited, New Delhi
2009 The Dark Science of Five Continents, Gallery BMB, Mumbai India Art Summit, New Delhi Tihar Jail Project, IGNCA, New Delhi India Contemporary, MOCA Shanghai Indian Highway, The Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art, Oslo India : New Giants, curated by Willem Baars , GEM Museum for Contemporary Art, Hague Inaugural show at Yale University’s School of Art, curated by Robert Storr, New York Indian Popular Culture… and Beyond. The Untold (the Rise of) Schisms, curated by Shaheen Merali, Comunidad de Madrid Bapu, curated by Gayatri Sinha, Saffront Art Gallery, Mumbai Beyond Globalization, Beyond Art Space, Beijing, China Arco Art Fair, Madrid, Spain Threshold: Forging Narratives in South Asian Contemporary Art, Aicon Gallery, New York, USA Indian Popular Culture and beyond Alcala’ 31, Madrid, Spain
2008 The Ghost of Souza, inaugural show in Bowery space, Aicon Gallery, New York, USA India Crossing, Studio la Città, Verona, Italy Link, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai Affair, 1x 1 Contemporary, Dubai “Everything”, Willem Baars Project, Amsterdam Frontlines: Notations from the contemporary Indian Urban, Bodhi Berlin, Berlin Paolo Curti, Milan Studio La Citta, Verona, Italy
2007 Think with the Senses – Feel with the Mind. Art in the Present Tense, Exhibited at the 52nd International Art Exhibition, curated by Robert Storr, the Venice Biennale India Arte Oggi, Spazio Oberdan, Milan, Italy ‘Kashi ten light years’, Kashi Art Gallery, Mattancherry, Kochi Milan Museum show, curated by Daniella Polizolli Frame/Grid/Room/Cell/, curated by Gayatri Sinha, Bodhi Art Gallery, Mumbai “India!”, Gallerie Helene Lamarque, Paris Art Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands I Fear, I believe, I desire, Gallery Espace, New Delhi, India Swarovski Museum show, Austria Mumbai Metronormes, Mumbai ‘Other’, inaugural show AICON Gallery, London Annual show, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai
2006 ‘Bronze’, sculpture show, Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi Art on the Beach, Made by Indians, St Tropez by Gallery Enrico Navarra, Paris On Difference #2 (represented Korea), Wurtt. Kunstverein Stuttgart, Germany Maarkers, Bodhi Art Gallery, Mumbai Red Earth And The Pouring Rain, Lanxess ABS Gallery, Baroda Strangeness, Anant Art Gallery, Kolkatta Singapore Art Fair, Singapore Enrico Navarra, Paris, France Viart, New Delhi, India
2005 KAAM, Arts India Gallery, New York, Palo Alto Span, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai Endless Terrain, Lalit Kala Academy, Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi Double Enders, Mumbai, Delhi, Bangalore, Cochin Present Future, National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai Configurations, Anant Art Gallery, New Delhi. Are we like this only? , Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi Whose space is it anyway? ,Gallery Espace, New Delhi Mannat Jali, Marine Drive, Mumbai Public Art Project, Gallery Chemould, Mumbai World Social Forum, Brazil.
2004 Group show during VASL Residency, Karachi Anticipations, Museum Gallery, Mumbai Bombay Boys, Palette Art Gallery, New Delhi A New Mediatic Realism, Bayer ABS Gallery, Baroda Generation I, Saffron Art Gallery, Mumbai RED, Palette Art Gallery, New Delhi Mumbai x 17, Kashi Art Gallery, Cochin
2003 Crossing Generations :Diverge, 40 years of Gallery Chemould, National Gallery of Highlights, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai 2D/3D, Visual Art Center, Hong Kong Ideas and Images, National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai Art for Art/ Switzerland Meets India, Kala Ghoda Festival, Mumbai
2002 Ways of Resisting 1992- 2002, Sahmat/ Rabindra Bhavan, New Delhi Words and Images, The Guild Art Gallery/ National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai Creative Space, Sakshi Gallery/ India Habitat Center, New Delhi Crosscurrents, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai Asian Art Festival, Singapore Harmony Shows (2004-1999), Nehru Centre, Mumbai Debt, The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai Tribute to Picasso, The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai
2001 The Human Factor, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai Engendering Images of women, The Guild, Mumbai Excerpts from my diary, Fine Art Company, Mumbai
2000 Mumbai Metaphor, Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai “Memos of the New Millennium”- from Artists of the Moulting World, curated by Abhay Sardesai, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Mumbai Exile Longings, Lakeeren Art Gallery, Mumbai Ideas and Images (Video installation), National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai
1999 Critic’s Choice, Ideas and Images, National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai Sir JJ School of Art,Annual Show , Mumbai
1998 Sir JJ School of Art,Annual Show Mumbai ‘He used to believe that EMS planted coconut tree in Kerala’, Installation, Sir J.J. School of Art, Mumbai ‘Essays in time’, kinetic sculptures (Audio-Visual Installation), Nehru Center, Mumbai Hebbar Foundation Scholarship 1998-1999
The artist lives and works in Mumbai and Kerala, India.