Sikander has described the genesis of Dislocation at length: “Forms like these sprung forth from my resisting the racial straitjacketing I encountered in the 1990s in America. The assumptions that were projected on to me about who I was or what I represented felt not just unfair but alien. Becoming the other, the outsider, through the prevalent and polarizing dichotomies of East-West, Islamic-Western, Asian-White, oppressive-free, led to an outburst of iconography of fragmented and severed bodies, androgynous forms, armless and headless torsos, and self-rooted, floating half-human figures. They refused to belong, to be fixed, to be grounded, or to be stereotyped.”

Shahzia Sikander (born 1969)
Dislocation, ca. 1995
Ink on layered tracing paper
Collection of the artist
© Shahzia Sikander. Courtesy: the artist, Sean Kelly, New York and Pilar Corrias, London.