Amar Kanwar’s films are complex contemporary narratives that connect intimate personal spheres to larger social and political processes, linking legends and ritual objects to new symbols and public events, mapping contexts and exploring the politics of violence, power, sexuality and justice.

Solo exhibitions of Kanwar’s work have been held at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York (2022); Ishara Art Foundation, Dubai (2020); and NYU Abu Dhabi Art Gallery (2020); Museo Nacional Thyssen-Bornemisza, Madrid (2019); Tate Modern, London; Minneapolis Institute of Arts and Marian Goodman Gallery, New York (2018), Bildmuseet, Umea, Sweden and Frac Pays de la Loire, Carquefou, France (2017); Goethe Institut, Mumbai (2016); Assam State Museum in collaboration with Kiran Nadar Museum of Art and North East Network, India (2015); Art Institute of Chicago ( 2014) ; Yorkshire Sculpture Park ( 2013); Fotomuseum Winterthur, Switzerland (2012); Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (2008); Whitechapel Art Gallery, London(2007); National Museum of Art, Architecture and Design, Oslo (2006); and Renaissance Society, Chicago (2004), among others.

Kanwar’s films have been screened in several local and international film festivals, galleries and museums. He has also participated in dOCUMENTA 11, 12, 13 and 14 in Kassel, Germany (2002, 2007, 2012, 2017).

He is the recipient of several awards and fellowships, including the IHME Helsinki Commission (2022); Prince Claus Award (2017); Creative Time’s Leonore Annenberg Prize for Art and Social Change (2014); an Honorary Doctorate in Fine Arts, Maine College of Art, USA (2006); Edvard Munch Award for Contemporary Art, Norway (2005); MacArthur Fellowship in India (2000); Golden Gate Award, San Francisco International Film Festival (1999); and Golden Conch, Mumbai International Film Festival(1998).

Kanwar studied at the Department of History, Ramjas College, Delhi University (1982–1985) and at the Mass Communication Research Center, Jamia Millia Islamia, New Delhi (1985–1987).

Kanwar was born in 1964 in New Delhi where he continues to live and work.

SAF participation:
Sharjah Biennial 10 and 11.


Kanwar, Amar

The Sovereign Forest

The Sovereign Forest attempts to reopen discussion and initiate a creative response to our understanding of crime, politics, human rights and ecology.

Kanwar, Amar

A Love Story

A Love Story is a miniature narrative in four acts where time becomes fluid as the image is distilled to its inner self.