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April 1–May 15, 2021

On view online and at JCAL's

Miller Gallery by appointment only.

Public Programs

Conversation with Artist Pairs and Curator

4/10, 2021, 2-4PM

Livestream via JCAL Youtube - RSVP

Inner-Act: Collage-Making Workshop with Labkhand Olfatmanesh and Gazelle Samizay

5/1, 2-4:30PM

via Zoom, advance registration required - RSVP

Art x Dance = Dialogue Between Art Disciplines: Performance by Shreya Mehta and Barkha Patel

5/8, 12PM

Miller Gallery - RSVP

& Livestream via JCAL Youtube

Meet the Artists (Saturday in the Gallery)

Miller Gallery - RSVP

4/17, 12-3PM: Marcy Chevali & Seema Shakti

4/24, 12-3PM: Anjali Deshmukh & Purvi Shah

5/8, 1-3PM: Shreya Mehta & Barkha Patel

"In a year defined by great turmoil and deep sorrow, when all forms of symbolic and actual distance, division, and isolation overwhelmed our daily lives and our world, how did we make space for meaningful creativity, connection, and collaboration? 
features fourteen women from the South Asian Diaspora who came together across geographical, cultural, political, and religious boundaries. Working as ‘artist pairs’ and grounded in an ethos of friendship, creative partnership, and community-building, their artworks illuminate shared bonds and histories, reveal personal and political narratives that may have been otherwise unknown or invisible, signal an economy of care, and envision a equitable future in which women thrive. 

In their collaborations, the artists draw on many South Asian traditions of craft such as bandhani dyeing techniques, mehndi, weaving, embroidery, as well as mediums of video, painting, sculpture, installation, photography, and choreography. Underscoring these artistic encounters are works that elevate the voices of generations of women across South Asian communities and address a range of pressing issues weighing on their hearts and minds: displacement and migration, the impact of ongoing traumas of war and gender violence. Whether they co-created these works digitally, or over many Zoom sessions, or through several back-and-forth travels through the mail, the artists featured in Encounters forged through distance, separation, and time zones in what they deemed 'a radical act of dreaming together.'" - Grace Aneiza Ali

Artist Pairs
Rashida Abuwala & Maya Mackrandilal
Anjali Deshmukh & Purvi Shah
Renluka Maharaj & Seema Shakti
Shreya Mehta & Barkha Patel
Labkhand Olfatmanesh & Gazelle Samizay
Ramya Ravisankar & Marcy Chevali
Sania Samad & Sadia Pasha Kamran



Grace Aneiza Ali 

Encounters is presented by the South Asian Womxn’s Creative Collective (SAWCC) in partnership with the Jamaica Center for Arts & Learning (JCAL). This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council. This program is additionally part of JCAL's two-year pilot project, Building Equity for BIIPOC (Black, Immigrant, Indigenous, People of Color) Artists, funded by New York Community Trust. [Banner image courtesy of the artist.]

About SAWCC: The South Asian Womxn’s Creative Collective (SAWCC) is a nonprofit arts organization dedicated to the advancement, visibility, and development of emerging and established South Asian womxn artists and creative professionals by providing a physical and virtual space to profile their creative and intellectual work across disciplines. Our programs present the creative work of South Asian womxn in various disciplines, including visual art, literature, film/media, and performance. SAWCC aims to connect artists, educators, community workers, and professionals of South Asian descent and encourage the growth of our creative community. For more information, visit

In-person visits to the gallery can be reserved on the following Saturdays, 12-3PM, with select artists present: April 3, 17, 24, and May 8 and 15. Other times can be reserved by special appointment. For more information and to RSVP, go to

Gallery Views

All installation photos by Tyrel Hunt unless otherwise indicated.

About the Artists

About the Curator

Grace Aneiza Ali is an Assistant Professor and Provost Fellow in the Department of Art & Public Policy at the Tisch School of the Arts, New York University, and affiliated faculty with the Asian/Pacific/American Institute. Ali earned a MA in Africana Studies from New York University and a BA in English literature (with a concentration in African Diaspora literature) and a Certificate in Women’s Studies from the University of Maryland, College Park, where she graduated magna cum laude.


Ali is a Curator whose curatorial research and teaching practice centers on curatorial activism, socially engaged art practices, global contemporary art, and art of the Caribbean Diaspora with a focus on her homeland Guyana. She serves as Curator-at-Large for the Caribbean Cultural Center African Diaspora Institute in New York. She is founder and curator of Guyana Modern, an online platform for contemporary arts and culture of Guyana, and founder and editorial director of OF NOTE Magazine—an award-winning nonprofit arts journalism initiative reporting on the intersection of art and activism. She is the author of Liminal Spaces: Migration and Women of the Guyanese Diaspora (Open Book Publishers, Cambridge, UK 2020).


Ali is the recipient of the following awards and fellowships that have generously supported her work: NYU Provost Faculty Fellowship, Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art Grant, Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts Curatorial Fellowship, Fulbright Fellowship, and the NYU Henry M. MacCracken Fellowship. She has been named a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum and Creative Trailblazer by the Jahajee Sisters Indo-Caribbean Women’s Empowerment Summit. Ali serves as a proud mentor for Girls Write Now, a leader in arts education, writing, and mentoring for underserved girls in New York City.  


Ali was born in Guyana and migrated to the United States with her family when she was fourteen years old.

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Jamaica, NY 11432, USA


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