Re_ | Neurotic Metropolis: Hema Upadhyay, Shambhavi Singh, Thukral & Tagra

16 July – 26 July at ArtSpace @ HeluTrans and Online

Re_ by STPI is a series of multi-platform viewing rooms. It brings together a selection of works from STPI’s inventory, placing them in new constellations for us to relook at them in fresh contexts. These will take place on our website and Artsy, as well as in-person. With a different focus for each iteration, the presentations will be refreshed regularly throughout the year. In the spirit of re-presenting these artworks in new situations, our first 3 viewing rooms will take place at the dynamic ArtSpace @ HeluTrans from 18 June to 26 July 2021.

We invite you to come down, or visit us online here and on Artsy, to Re_Visit, Re_View and Re_Connect with us through our third viewing room, Neurotic Metropolis.


See the works in person:

16 to 26 July 2021, 11.00AM to 7.00PM daily

ArtSpace @ HeluTrans
39 Keppel Road, #01-05 Tanjong Pagar Distripark, Singapore 089065
Click here for directions.


Complimentary guided tours take place every Saturday and Sunday at 2.00PM. Click here to book your slot.

Neurotic Metropolis: Hema Upadhyay, Shambhavi Singh, Thukral & Tagra

The 21st century moves at the speed of light.

Globalisation is not new. In this era, however, its current expression takes on a more complex form, where its dimensions—extensity, intensity, velocity and impact—are rapidly expanded, leading to what is known as the “Acceleration of Globalisation”. 

Though the way that this has manifested across various political, social and economic landscapes differ from place to place, some key features have been lauded as a positive output of the phenomena: dreams of modernity and a utopian urban lifestyle.

On the flipside, moreover, remains the stark realities of current-day globalisation. In the work of three Indian artists/artist duo, Hema Upadhyay, Shambhavi Singh, and Thukral and Tagra, a cogent examination of globalisation’s underbelly takes place. 

Hema Upadhyay, ‘Universe Revolves On (IV)’, 2008

Hema Upadhyay observes Mumbai as a neurotic metropolis and questions the meaning of home in the face of India’s rapid urbanisation. In particular, she looks at the thousands who come to the city to pursue their aspirations only to be confronted by the random harshness of its social and political complexities.

Shambhavi Singh, ‘Anjor Teen / Illuminate 3’, 2011

Shambhavi Singh translated her concepts inspired by the frugal lives of farmers from her native land Bihar, India into powerful, minimalist works using paper. By using new methods and icons, her works express the transient realities of life in a fickle era of materialistic excess.

Thukral & Tagra, ‘Attractively Awful (a)’, 2009

Thukral & Tagra’s artworks comment on the globalisation of consumer culture and the repercussions of this as it is being experienced in India today. While both playful and humorous, their works express thoughtful questions about the nature of Indian identity as articulated by Indians themselves and projected by India to the rest of the world.

Through the works of these artists/artist duo, Neurotic Metropolis prompts us to re-evaluate the rapidly moving world we live in, and rethink the surreptitious realities beneath the luminous face of progress. 

View our Artsy Viewing Room now to find out more and see all available works.

Available Publications 

Hema Upadhyay: Universe Revolves On
With essay by Annapurna Garimella

Shambhavi: Lonely Furrow
With essay by Sanjog Sharan

Thukral and Tagra: Low-Tech Family Vacations
With essay by Dr. Lucian Harris