Princess Pea

Princess Pea, Installation view

Born in Ferozpur, India, in 1980, Princess Pea is an anonymous Gurgaon based visual and performance artist whose work investigates notions of gender identity and the self. Drawing from a variety of influences, from literature, mythology, crafts to contemporary politics and society, she is best known for her deeply evocative and collaborative performance and sculptural practice.  With her identity guarded behind a large anime head, Princess Pea broke into the art scene in 2009 with her solo at the India Art Fair and has developed a uniquely distinct style and iconography; since then, she pops up at various public places and events such as art fairs, asking questions to the society about identity and self-worth. Through her contemporary art practices, Princess Pea brings to the forefront of international issues of tradition, identity and celebrity with an underlying satire on global societal concerns. Through her carefully constructed alter ego, the anonymous female artist seeks to challenge our conception of what constitutes femininity and womanhood. A continuation of previously explored ideas weaving together narratives of contemporary gender stereotypes with mythologies of the feminine. This creates an as yet, untold story of the ‘woman’. A continuation of her earlier works, community building and raising voices that have cultural and sociopolitical connotations, in the telling of this tale of the ‘ideal’ feminine. The broad scope of art challenges perceptions about our conceived notions of the self. As Princess Pea, the artist presents to the world her alter ego in the form of a ‘living toy’ an anime-style figure that can neither talk, smell nor hear, its a fictional world and she is far away from this world. Thepractice revolves around the ideas of identity, notions of perfection, self-worth, and further inquires the conflicts between traditional and contemporary roles of women in Indian society. Gender-based discrimination against female children is pervasive across the world; it is seen in all strata of society and manifests in various forms. It is argued that, on account of this inferior treatment, females often fail to understand their rights. This is more predominant in India and a pressing issue that the artist seeks to address.
Representing strong feminist messages and made in collaboration with traditional Etikopakka artisans from coastal Andhra Pradesh, her recent series of miniature wooden sculptures – Daadi, Kali, and Soul Sister – have been widely popular as well as contributed to the revival of the age-old toymaking art form.
In addition to her performance art and sculptures, Princess Pea moves easily between drawing, painting, and photography. She is the runner-up of the 2021 Soho Art Prize and has been an Artist in Residence at the prestigious HH Art Spaces, Goa, and Khoj International Artists Association, New Delhi. Her work has been the subject of a number of solo and group exhibitions at Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai, Exhibit320, Shrine Empire Gallery, all New Delhi, Rob Dean Gallery, London, and AORA Space virtual gallery, along with featuring at leading international platforms including at the India Art Fair and Art Dubai.