Sculpting Lives: Rana Begum

Apr 21, 06:00 AM

We interview Rana Begum in her studio, asking about definitions of sculpture, and things which aren’t usually spoken about – how to balance family life and her artistic career, and the problems she has encountered. We asked her about biography, race, identity and Britishness and how these issues feed into her work.

“I don’t want to use a language that really segregates people. I don’t want to use a language that makes them think about gender – if they are looking at a female artist or a male artist.” Rana Begum.  
 
Rana was born in Bangladesh and came to Britain as a child. She is an artist who works across sculptural materials and crosses disciplines. She is working through what sculpture can be in the world, moving across disciplines like paintings, architecture, design and furniture. She also uses colour and light as materials and doesn’t define herself as a ‘sculptor’ – she calls herself ‘a visual artist.’
 
We interviewed her in her studio, asking about definitions of sculpture, and things which aren’t usually spoken about – how to balance family life and her artistic career, and the problems she has encountered. We asked her about biography, race, identity and Britishness and how these issues feed into her work. 
 
“Living in East London I feel like I’m almost living in a bubble. (You leave and) you are made to remember your skin colour, you’re made to remember your gender, you’re made to remember your religion and all of those things you take for granted when you live in a place like this.” Rana Begum.

With contributions from:

·      Rana Begum, R.A.
·      Anne Barlow, Director, Tate St Ives
·      Hammad Nasar, Senior Research Fellow, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, and curator of the British Art Show 9
·      Clare Lilley, Director of Programme, Yorkshire Sculpture Park