Woman from Kabul is a work about living in Afghanistan at the turn of the new millennium. The artist recalls a country rich in history and resources that has collapsed under the weight of war. A figure of an elderly woman, stripped of most of her black burka, squats over a very decorative backdrop of wall paper. Her body is revealed as skin and bones, representative of the oppression and squalor that has become endemic of the city. Dodiya’s work is a potent reminder of the plight of the refugee.
In Portrait of Niko Pirosmani (1862-1918) Dodiya portrays the Georgian primitivist Niko Pirosmani, who was revered for having invented a new technique of painting during periods of solitude and poverty. The portrait of Pirosmani initially formed part of Dodiya’s large scale exhibition ’Shri Khakhar Prasanna’ which was dedicated to his friend, the late painter Bhupen Khakhar. Believing that Khakhar was influenced by Pirosmani, Dodiya wanted to include the Georgian painter in his show. The artist uses found objects such as the cotton Kurta and pyjamas which hang over this painting. Here they are dyed a different colour in tribute to Khakhar, who dyed his kurta pyjamas black so he could wear them as an apron in his studio.