Who is Subodh Gupta?

Art & Culture
Art & Culture

Since 2016, Le Bon Marché Rive Gauche has been honouring contemporary art as a tribute to the White month created by Aristide and Marguerite Boucicaut. Discover Subodh Gupta, the Indian artist at the forefront of this eighth event.


Exhibited around the world for over 20 years, Subodh Gupta is one of the leading figures in contemporary art. The aluminium and stainless steel that make up the kitchen utensils become the raw materials for monumental installations, whose brilliance fascinates the artist. His work is based on many stories, both personal and universal.


Portrait of a multi-faceted artist.


Discover "Sangam" by Subodh Gupta at Le Bon Marché from 9 January to 19 February 2023.

Subodh Gupta in five dates

1964: Subodh Gupta was born in India, in Khagaul, a small town in the state of Bihar. At the age of 16, he joined a troupe in which he performed for five years before continuing his studies at the College of Arts and Crafts in Patna.


1986: it was not long before the talented and passionate visual was noticed and he unveiled his first exhibition at the Gandhi Sangrahalaya in Patna at the age of 22.


1995: after studying at the National Academy of Fine Arts in New Delhi, Subodh Gupta created his first works consisting of kitchen utensils. Fascinated by this central piece of the home and attracted by the brilliance of aluminium, he began to distort these everyday objects into monumental and majestic installations where the ordinary becomes art. A powerful artistic concept, which over the years has become his signature.


2004: recognized on the international art scene, Subodh Gupta is appointed professor at the Beaux-Arts de Paris.


2018: Monnaie de Paris exhibits his most famous works in a huge retrospective exhibition, “Adda / Rendez-vous”.

“Utensils are simple things. However, amalgamated together, in my mind, they speak to the complicated textures of life, the nuances, lines and shadows, as seen in our palms.”

Subodh Gupta

From New Delhi to Paris

Since his early days, Subodh Gupta has had a keen interest in France, where he regularly installs many of his works in temporary exhibitions. In 2002, encouraged by Nicolas Bourriaud and Jérôme Sans, he participated in the inauguration of the Palais de Tokyo in Paris. A few years later, he took over the Centre Pompidou for the “Paris Delhi Bombay” exhibition and, in 2013, received the insignia of the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres.


An important figure on the international art scene, Subodh Gupta fascinates and intrigues with his grandiose installations. Impressive works, which the artist exhibited in 2018 at the Monnaie de Paris, in a retrospective exhibition called “Adda / Rendez-vous”.


Four years later, he presented his “Sangam” exhibition at Le Bon Marché.


Subodh Gupta's iconic works

“Very Hungry God”, 2006

Fascinating and frightening at the same time, Very Hungry God takes the form of a contemporary vanitas. In this work, Subodh Gupta deploys an accumulation of kitchen utensils that he associates with religious beliefs and offerings. A disconcerting installation, which confronts two populations, those who suffer from famine and those who live in abundance. 

Photo : In Situ Fabienne Leclerc, Paris

©Hauser & Wirth

“Faith Matters”, 2007-2008

The installation echoes Subodh Gupta's passion for food and the ritual of eating. For this work, he brings together and arranges a set of kitchen utensils. Installed on a mechanical conveyor belt, the objects follow a silent loop, like a denunciation of food shortages.

Photo : Stefan Altenburger Photography Zürich

©Hauser & Wirth

“Ali Baba”, 2011

The work refers to a tale from the 1001 nights, in which a man stumbles upon a cave filled with treasures. With Ali Baba, Subodh Gupta creates a cave full of glittering objects. But what appears to be a paradise of precious materials, turns out to be simply filled with dazzling stainless steel cooking utensils. 

Photo : OakTay l o r-Smith

©L’artiste et la GALLERIA CONTINUA

« The Water Is In The Pot, The Pot Is In The Water », 2012

A reference to Kabir, a 15th century Indian poet, the work offers a multiplicity of meanings. It recalls to our collective memory the subject of immigration, but also the motif of the mythological boat, which serves as a passage to the underworld. 

Photo : Martin Argyroglo

« My Mother and Me », 2014

Here Subodh Gupta offers the possibility of entering the work and looking up at the sky through an opening at the top. First conceived in 1997, My Mother and Me contains a memory of the artist, who used to make cow patties with his mother for religious rituals. A tribute, which shows, once again, that the ordinary can be magnified.

Photo : Graham Crouch

©Hauser & Wirth

« Cooking The World », 2017

In Western cultures, the notion of gathering around a convivial table is essential. With Cooking The World, Subodh Gupta pays tribute to this tradition by creating a new space for collective ritual. Presented in 2017 for the Swiss edition of the Art Basel fair, the installation was accompanied by a meal prepared by the artist. 

Photo : Sebastiano Pellion


« My Village », 2022

In My Village, Subodh Gupta highlights kitchen utensils with paint. The artist presents a very realistic work, focused on details, colours and light but one which borders on trompe l'oeil, where the painting seems to change dimension and take shape.

Photo : Allison Borgo

©L’artiste et la GALLERIA CONTINUA

The programmation


Du 14 janvier au 15 janvier

Découvrez l'exposition de Subodh Gupta accompagné par notre médiateur.


Du 14 janvier Au 11 février

Découvrez lors d'une visite-atelier les œuvres de Subodh Gupta avec Les Récrés.