Camilla Dilshat is a sculpture/installation artist of Uyghur ethnicity born and based in London (b.1998). She is currently a student on the MA Fine Art course at City & Guilds of London Art School and has a studio in Brixton.
Emerging from experiential reflections, Camilla Dilshat ponders about how the body-experience forms an understanding of one’s diasporic identity while also shattering your sense of place. Her life has been littered with misunderstandings from others towards her own Uyghur ethnicity. Her body felt invisible, and her mouth felt unequipped to handle the tiring task of self-definition. As a therapeutic venture, she engages in sculpture making to confront the uncomfortable itching beneath the skin. She picks away at and exposes areas of discomfort, and disconnection, while simultaneously unearthing areas of comfort: her mother, her mother’s knowledge and her precious homecooked food. Endless noodles are laboriously made in Camilla’s household and thus in her studio, warmly weighing her stomach into a sense of place.
Surreal, breathing sculptures traverse between bodily states: fullness, satisfaction, suffocation, and emptiness to name a few. Voluminous gourds speak of the stomach, body, and mouth, spurting and sucking up doughy wiggles. The domestic and the abject leaks out of her works - intimate in size consisting of materials such as: fatty latex, severed ceramic tongues, hair, raw wool, and uncanny references to food. Through a ritual and haptic process reflective of her Mum’s food preparation, Camilla rolls, squeezes, and dusts with “flour”. Sandy textures and dry branches speak strongly of location. Of a homeland that now precariously exists in fleeting memory, overshadowed by a stifling political narrative of ethnic genocide. Through a strong sense of process and materiality, Camilla follows a long slippery noodle towards her heritage and a grounded self, exposing the coexistence of comfort and discomfort that defines the diasporic experience.
"Home Away From Home", House of Annetta, London, 20-28 July 2023
"Threshold", Hanbury Hall, London, 4-18 May 2023
"What Do We Become", Barbican Centre, Level G Hub, London, 14 April - 7 May 2023
"MA Fine Art Interim Show", City & Guilds on London Art School, London, 16-17 March 2023
“Uyghur: Reclaiming our Story”, Schoolhouse Studios, Melbourne, Australia, 11-18 March 2023
“Canyon”, Fresh Salad Art (virtual exhibition + Projection at RupturEXIBIT, London), 17 Feb – 3 March 2023
"Anonyme Zeichner", Galerie Im Körnerpark, Berlin, Germany, 18 June - 24 Aug 2022
"Meet Me Halfway", The Art Pavilion Mile End, London, 8-11 June 2022
"MA Fine Art Interim Show", City & Guilds of London Art School, London, March 2022
"Full-time Student Final Exhibition", Hampstead School of Art, June 2021
“Full-time Student Interim Exhibition”, Hampstead School of Art, May 2021
“They Came Before Us: Can't Be What You Can't See”, Collage Arts, Collaborative Visual Artist, Shoreditch & Wood Green, Nov 2019
Salt Dough Making Workshop, Barbican Centre, 5 May 2023
Drop-in Zine Making Workshop Leader, Redbridge Heritage Centre, 14 Feb 2023
Two Day Kids Salt-Dough Workshop Leader, “Neeli Malik: 100 Days of Groceries”, Chingford Mount, 13 Jan – 6 Feb 2023
Children’s Ceramics Workshop Teacher, Hampstead School of Art, Jan 2023 - ongoing
People Powered Research Volunteer for “Ilford Limited: Analogue Stories”, National Portrait Gallery x Redbridge Museum, April - Dec 2022
Alumni Committee Member, The Creative Dimension Trust, 2020-ongoing
Memory Structure in Uyghur Anthology Vol. 1, In collaboration with The Tarim Network, René Cassin and Moishe House, 2022, online publication. pp.50.
Talking to the Artist Camilla Dilshat, Tarim Network: Our Canvas, Video Interview
MA Fine Art, City & Guilds of London Art School, 2021-2023
Advanced Course in Fine Art, Hampstead School of Art, 2020-2021
BA History, UCL, 2017-2020