Book Discussion | “Grafted Arts: Art Making and Taking in the Struggle for Western India, 1760–1910”
September 7, 2022
About “Grafted Arts: Art Making and Taking in the Struggle for Western India, 1760–1910”
During the eighteenth century, Maratha military rulers and British East India Company officials used the arts to engage in diplomacy, wage war, compete for prestige, and generate devotion as they allied with (or fought against) each other to control western India. This book conceptualizes the artistic combinations that resulted as ones of “graft”—a term that acknowledges the violent and creative processes of suturing arts, and losing and gaining goods, as well as the shifting dynamics among agents who assembled such materials.
About Holly Shaffer
Holly Shaffer is Assistant Professor of the History of Art and Architecture at Brown University. Her research focuses on art and architecture in Britain and South Asia across visual, material, and sensory cultures. Her book Grafted Arts: Art Making and Taking in the Struggle for Western India, 1760–1910 was awarded the Edward Cameron Dimock, Jr. Prize in the Indian Humanities by the American Institute of Indian Studies. Shaffer curated the exhibition Adapting the Eye: An Archive of the British in India, 1770–1830 at the Yale Center for British Art. She and Laurel Peterson, Assistant Curator of Prints and Drawings, are co-curators of an upcoming exhibition at the YCBA about artists and the British East India Company.
This program is presented through the generosity of the Terry F. Green 1969 Fund for British Art and Culture.