Born 1968, Pakistan
Rashid Rana’s digital prints piece together thousands of individual portraits and images, re-casting them as pixels within a single image. Rashid Rana’s works manipulate micro-photographs from contemporary advertisements into digitized, iconic re-creations of, for example, mosque ornamentation, the Mughal Emperor Jahangir in profile, and French Impressionist painting. Such a conglomeration and visual synthesis show Rashid Rana’s fascination with the components and history of a photographic ‘moment’. From his culturally provocative Veil series to the more popularised Bollywood portraits Rashid Rana’s use of such vast source material conveys the conflicting influences and heritage in contemporary Indian culture. Developing a conceptually driven practice that maintains a pixelated attention to formal concerns, Rashid Rana has emerged as a leading figure among Pakistan’s younger artists. First educated at the National College of Art, Lahore, and earning an MFA from the Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, Rana also studied fashion design in Paris in 1996. Born in Pakistan, he now divides his time between Toronto and Lahore. In works that suggest a simultaneous exploration of media and identity bound by a political edge, Rashid Rana satirizes pop culture, transforms symbols of traditional Muslim daily life, and reinterprets elements of art and cultural history.