We first featured Sroops work as part of our Graduates 2009 feature 18 months ago. It’s fair to say she’s gone on to bigger and better things since then and last night opened her first solo exhibition The Golden Glassy at The Arts Gallery. Consisting of some quality “idiosyncratic visual wit” and a personal exploration into her dual nationality, The Golden Glassy is a collection of iconic pub signs, influenced by Asian consumer design ephemera and serving as reinterpretations of quintessential pieces of visual heritage from both British and Indian culture. We were keen to find out more…
Can you tell us a little about the exhibition and how it came about?
The exhibition presents a visual history of England, using the traditional pub sign to explore our national identity and reinvent our visual heritage. My uncle actually came up with the idea when he was looking through my portfolio earlier last year. He commented on how for him, the combined simplicity of text, image and colour created really striking compositions, which in turn reminded him of pub signage. I thought he was on to something and just ran with it.
Where does the name “The Golden Glassy” come from?
‘The Golden Glassy’ is a pub in Wolverhampton, ran by Asian people in a predominantly Asian community. ‘Glassy’ is an Anglo-Indian term for ‘Glass’. The ‘Golden’ part not only mimics the English tradition of pub names, but also describes the colour of the intoxicating liquid inside the glass- whisky! It’s a favoured Indian drink and reminds me of my great grandfather, my grandfather, my dad, my uncles, and every other old Indian man.
How daunting is it to have your first solo show?
It’s the most terrifying and exciting thing in the world. You know that it’s a defining moment in your career- the first solo show- and its a tummy-twisting feeling to think that something you’ve invested everything in will ultimately disappoint people and fail to achieve what you set out to do. The whole things been an awesome experience though- so exciting/nerve-wracking.
How much drinking had to be undertaken to produce the work?
Ha! You don’t think my work is a misaligned mess on purpose do you?
What would you be found drinking in your local?
I’ll have a Guinness and blackcurrent please.
The Golden Glassy runs until 5 March 2011. For more details see our What’s On listing.