Exhibition Schedule



Erasing Borders: Indian Artists in the Diaspora


 Delna Dastur

Delna Dastur
1222 Raymond Avenue
McLean, Virginia  22101
Tel: 703 821- 2816     
Fax: 703 760-9449



Over the years as I developed as an artist, I came to the realization that the methods and materials involved in painting are as important to me as the subject matter. Applying paint, charcoal, inks or whatever be the material of my choice, freely and unsparingly has always thrilled me. Although my subject matter is universal - landscapes, figures, abstractions, I do feel that the colors I use are a reflection of my upbringing in India. Unconsciously I am drawn to the brilliance of the colors I was surrounded by during my childhood in India. Educated on both continents, undergraduate degrees from the University of Bombay and Wellesley College, plus a masters degree in oil painting from the American University, Washington D.C., I follow the art scene in both countries and feel comfortable in both.

For several years after I received my graduate degree in oil painting, I embraced charcoal as my primary medium and explored it to its fullest, using a variety of improvised tools such as ear syringes, brushes, charcoal powder, colored ink and many different types of erasers. I continue with it to this day, sharing what I have learnt with my students in a class entitled, "Creative Approaches."

Always wanting to experiment, I decided to switch to wooden panels onto which I paste bristol paper, draw on it with charcoal, and glaze the completed drawing with acrylic paint. To add even greater surface texture, I glue on meshed fabric, sand and shaved pastel crumbles. The glossiness of the paint contrasts with the soft matte quality of pastels which I use sparingly.

Wanting to push this method further, I moved onto canvas, using a similar approach. I paste on paper which I cut into geometric shapes and onto which I draw abstract patterns in charcoal. I apply gels and molding paste, pumice and drywall tape as well to add further texture to the canvas.

I realize now that I have come full circle and after many years have returned to painting on canvases as I did when I was a graduate student. I continue, however, to experiment with the wooden panels and the charcoal drawings. This time around, though, I have years of experience and the drive to be imaginative, continually striving for new boundaries. I endeavor to transport the viewer beyond the obvious lure of color and subject matter, to free him from a temporary attraction, to ponder my motives and, hopefully, to feel my spirit.

2000 - Abstract Art Studies, The Art League, Alexandria, Virginia
1977 - M.F. A. - Oil Painting, The American University, Washington D.C.
1971 - B.A. - Art History, Wellesley College, Wellesley, Massachusetts
1967 - B.A. - English/French, The University of Bombay, India

Solo and Group Exhibitions
Virginia: The Art League, The Principle Gallery, Gallery West, The Atheneum,
The Arlington Arts Center, The Emerson Gallery,
Greater Reston Arts Center, The Little Gallery at Smith Mountain Lake
Washington, D.C.: The Capitol Hill Art League, The Kreeger Art Gallery,
Heritage India Gallery/Lounge
Maryland: Oxon Hill Manor, Rockville Arts Place
Delaware: The Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts,
Carspecken-Scott Gallery
New York City: Prince Street Gallery,
Indo-American Arts Council- Passport to Contemporary Indian Art
Ohio: The Shoreby Club, The Grinning Byrd Gallery

Solo and Group Exhibitions for 2005-2006
The Grinning Byrd Gallery, Cleveland, Ohio - Women's Group Show, May 2005
The Market Street Bar and Grill, Reston, Virginia - Solo Show, October 2005
Art Musings, Mumbai, India - Group Show, April 2006
The Ninth Street Gallery, Washington DC - Group Show, July 2006
Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai, India - Group Show, October 2006
Scott-Carspecken Gallery, Wilmington, Delaware - Solo Show, December 2006

Select Curated Shows
Grace Hartigan, "Drawings Coast to Coast," a national drawing competition, at Rockville Arts Place
Jeremy Strick, Associate Curator, 20th century art, National Gallery, Washington D.C. at the Greater Reston Arts Center
F. Lennox Campello, "Color Forbidden: Black and White Figures" at the
Greater Reston Arts Center

Capital Hill Arts Workshop, Washington DC, - juried show, May 2006

Teaching Experience 2002 - 2005
Creative Approaches in Contemporary Art - The Art League, Alexandria, Virginia

Elan Magazine, Cover and lead article, November 2000
The International Indian, 2000



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