PAULA TORRES, Photo & Social Media Editor—Student artist spotlight: Shruti Shankar’s series inspired by beauty and pandemic, in India

About the Works:

The COVID pandemic has been essential to my thinking and acting on the importance of collectivism in the face of rising social inequalities.

This series is my attempt to respond to and make aware the plight of the migrant diaspora in India.

The past two months have been a time of acknowledging my own privilege in coming home and a desire to respond to the migrant crisis.

I drew on images and articles from the media that documented this crisis, abstracting them and merging them with the landscape.

I collaged the works together with patterns I found around my own home.

Themes of togetherness and seclusion, anonymity and visibility and beauty and tragedy have been important to this series.

I continue to wrestle with the visibility that comes with privilege and the invisibility in its absence as well as the act of navigating urgency and beauty in crisis. — Shruti Shankar ‘21


In India, one of the most devastating impacts of the pandemic, and subsequent lock-down, is its magnitude directed to the migrant community.

Factories and workplaces in the cities shut down, causing millions of individuals have had to deal with loss of income, food shortages and uncertainty about the future. With no means of transport, families were forced to embark on their long journey home on foot. Others were left stranded in the cities with no livelihood.

Many did not have information about emergency welfare measures provided by the government or did not know how to access existing schemes.

About the Artist:

Shruti Shankar, ‘21 is a senior and a Studio Art major and Art History minor.

She is an international student from Chennai, India.

Her works largely usin the mediums of drawing and print making as well as large scale multimedia wall installations.

Her work explores ideas of movement, memory, journey and belonging.

You can find her at Bryant at almost anytime of the day, most likely sipping on some coffee!