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Mallika Rao
Mallika Rao is a staff writer at HuffPost, focused on the intersection of race and art.

Entries by Mallika Rao

Photographer Turns Beirut Into A Minimalist Candyland

(3) Comments | Posted April 22, 2015 | 8:48 AM

minimalist beirut

Matt Crump is an expert at erasing history. Using Photoshop, the Texas-based photographer edits the world around him into neon planes that are among Instagram's most popular images. His latest work testifies to the appeal of the edited...

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These Saudi Women Are Turning Feminism Into Art

(0) Comments | Posted April 14, 2015 | 3:17 PM

filwa nazar micro chat 2014

Filwa Nazar, Micro Chat. 2014.

A Saudi Arabian woman is like a flightless bird. So wrote the famed Saudi activist Wajeha Al-Huwaider in 2010, while looking out on the Gulf of Mexico...

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Meet On Kawara, An Artist Who Obsessively Documented His Life For 48 Years

(0) Comments | Posted April 14, 2015 | 8:53 AM


Title, 1965, Acrylic on canvas, triptych, National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., Patrons’ Permanent Fund

For the late artist On Kawara, time is everything. His titles state as much. "One Million Years" chronicles every year from 998,031 B.C. to A.D....

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Freida Pinto On The 'Extreme Ecstasy' Of Her Politically-Charged Dance Film

(3) Comments | Posted April 10, 2015 | 6:23 PM

Some life stories seem fated for Hollywood.

"Desert Dancer" tells the extraordinary tale of Iran's most famous living dancer, Afshin Ghaffarian, who fled his country during the Arab Spring to freely practice his art in Europe. The semi-biographical movie stars Reece Ritchie as Ghaffarian, and opens in...

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The Kids Are ALL-CAPS

(38) Comments | Posted April 8, 2015 | 10:15 AM

jenny holzer

For decades, artists like the projectionist Jenny Holzer have found political power in all-caps writing. So why is it so maligned on the Internet?

Good Internet citizens are supposed to hate all-caps writing. It's shouty, it's misused....

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Pakistan's First Animated Feature Gives Young Fans What They've Never Had -- Pakistani Heroes

(0) Comments | Posted March 31, 2015 | 9:31 AM

3 bahadur

Pakistani kids will finally meet homegrown heroes this May: Amna, Saadi and Kamil, the three spunky protagonists of "3 Bahadur" ("3 Brave," in Urdu). The David-and-Goliath plot -- our trio rises up to fight mysterious forces plaguing their hometown -- is the...

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Inside Alserkal Avenue, The Middle East's Hippest Art Enclave

(0) Comments | Posted March 26, 2015 | 8:39 AM

alserkal avenue

An aerial shot of Alserkal Avenue.

Grit and galleries go together, at least until the latter cancels out the former. From Shoreditch in London to Chelsea in New York City, gallerists have a habit of colonizing industrial...

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No Punctuation Is Funnier

(57) Comments | Posted March 19, 2015 | 8:46 AM

Technology, we are told every week or so, is rewiring our sentences. The open structure of...

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The Greatest Indian Art Show Of The Spring Is Happening In America

(1) Comments | Posted March 16, 2015 | 11:16 AM

featherdot postdate

From 'Postdate': In Featherdot, from her 2001 series “An Indian from India—Portfolio II,” artist Annu Palakunnathu Matthew reenacts iconic photographs of Native Americans by photographers such as Edward S. Curtis and prints them next to the original image. Courtesy of the artist and sepia...

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An Exile From Iraq Paints Herself Into Ancient Manuscripts

(3) Comments | Posted March 6, 2015 | 8:05 AM

Hayv Kahraman was in her fourth grade history class in Baghdad when the question was asked: Is Iraq a democracy or a dictatorship? Not knowing what either word meant, she guessed “dictatorship.” This proved to be the wrong choice, no matter how right the answer was: the next...

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The Oscars Of The GIF World Needs You

(0) Comments | Posted March 3, 2015 | 4:30 PM


And you! And you and you and you. Kindly turn your attention to the only Vice-approved ceremony of awards season: The .GIFYs, a yearly event honoring the gems that sparkle in the dust of this terrible planet known as Internet....

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Subodh Gupta Is Not A Pipe

(7) Comments | Posted February 25, 2015 | 8:22 AM

subodh gupta

Orange Thing. 2014. Steel, copper tongs, plastic. Photo: Genevieve Hanson.

Subodh Gupta is having an identity crisis. Depending on which critic you read, the artist who famously turns kitchenware into elaborate sculptures is either Damien Hirst, Marcel...

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Mao Yan: A Portraitist For The Selfie Age

(10) Comments | Posted February 24, 2015 | 7:58 AM

Traditional Chinese portraiture is all about soul. To be more precise, it's about chi-yun-sheng-tung, translation: "breath-resonance-life-motion." Also known as "spirit resonance," the painting principle is the most provocative of six legendary rules enshrined by a 6th century critic, Hsieh Ho (the others are more concrete, describing how to...

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Le féminisme voilé de la photographe marocaine Lalla Essaydi (PHOTOS)

(0) Comments | Posted February 12, 2015 | 5:11 PM

ART – Dans son ouvrage de référence, L'orientalisme, le regretté Edward Saïd parle d’"extériorité", ce décalage entre les fantasmes et la réalité du voyageur. En lisant les récits de voyage d’écrivains français, il expliquait qu'il trouvait que les représentations de l'Orient avaient "très peu à voir" avec ce que lui...

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The Veiled Feminism Of Moroccan-Born Photographer Lalla Essaydi

(25) Comments | Posted February 11, 2015 | 8:15 AM

In his landmark book, Orientalism, the late scholar Edward Said wrote of "exteriority," a disconnect between the traveler's fantasies and reality. Reading the travelogues of French writers, Said once explained that he found "representations of the Orient had very little to do with what I knew about my...

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17세기 일본의 홍등가 홍보 포스터(사진)

(0) Comments | Posted February 10, 2015 | 8:07 PM

17세기 일본의 마담과 포주들은 자기들이 속한 홍등가를 '덧없는 세상(우키요, 浮世)'이라고 불렀다. 우키요의 원래 지명은 구 요시와라가 화재로 사라진 후 새로 지은 신 요시와라로, 글자의 뜻을 풀면 '새로운 행운의 땅'이다.

floating world art

'새로운 행운의 땅'이라는 환상에 사람들을 더 기대게 하고 싶었던 것일까. 미국...

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Here's How Japan Marketed Its Sprawling Red-Light District Hundreds Of Years Ago

(2) Comments | Posted February 9, 2015 | 9:44 AM

It was a stroke of marketing genius on the part of the madams and pimps of Japan's 17th century red light district to call their digs the Floating World. Ukiyo in Japanese, the phrase came to signify not only a locale distinct from the rest of Edo, the city known...

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Goodbye Marfa, Texas

(7) Comments | Posted February 2, 2015 | 9:26 AM

marfa beyonce

"Did you go to the Beyoncé place? Did you even do anything in Marfa?" -- Concierge at the Camino Real hotel in El Paso, January 2015. Image via Tumblr.

When we love something we inevitably ruin it...

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These Twitter-Sourced Collages Paint A Dark Portrait Of Today's Iran

(6) Comments | Posted January 29, 2015 | 8:12 AM

Sheida Soleimani learned early about injustice. Her parents, outspoken critics of the Iranian government, fled the country during the regime collapse of the 1970s, alongside so many moderates. Sheida’s mother was imprisoned and tortured on her way out, forced to endure an indefinite period of time apart from...

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These 3D Printed 'Face Vases' Are A Real Thing You Can Own

(0) Comments | Posted January 29, 2015 | 8:07 AM

There is something very SNL sketch-worthy about the "Fahz," a customized vase imprinted with the faces of those you love.

Maybe it's the pleasantly dorky Kickstarter video associated with it, in which a couple in matching glasses and black tops make sure to pronounce "fahz"...

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