The whitewashing of #WhitePeopleDoingYoga
October 25, 2019 6:49 AM Subscribe
My artwork was about appropriation. San Francisco’s Asian Art Museum tried to appropriate it. Indian American artist Chiraag Bhakta on his experience with the SF Asian Art Museum. When I was asked to contribute to the Asian Art Museum's exhibit on yoga, I took the invitation at face value: The Asian Art Museum wanted to give space to an Indian American artist. I knew the title #WhitePeopleDoingYoga would be provocative, but I chose it for a reason: For this installation, yoga was a case study in how culture gets colonized, a pattern that holds across industries, from fashion to food to music. But once my proposal made the rounds among curators, educators, and PR folks, cracks started to show in the museum’s support for the installation.