One of my favorite historians is Yuval Noah Harari, who I quote “Humans Love Stories”.
One of the biggest stories today is the story of female leadership. In our constant effort to challenge, re-evaluate and improve the role of women in our various systems, I often wonder how difficult it might have been for those women who fought to be female political leaders in pre-modern times. How did they do it? Specifically, how did they become The Monarch, The Head of State, The Supreme Leader, the Czar, The Empress – back in those times when most women were silenced in all aspects of life? My curiosity lead me to read about so many of the girls who became women of power – Cleopatra (Egypt, circa 50 BC), Wu Zetian (China, circa 650 AD), Catherine the Great (Russia, circa 1750), Elizabeth I (England, late 1500’s), Padmavati (India, late 1200’s), Empress Theodora (Byzantium, Circa 530), Empress Suiko (Japan, circa 600), and the list goes on.
The Empress Collection by Amrita Sen is my own celebration of the brave female leaders that our history has witnessed. I have created a series of mixed media paintings that are carefully printed on large 43 inch silk and poly-silk scarves. These scarves are intended to be framed and displayed. The process of creating these works has been lengthy – starting with hand drawings and mini oil paints that illustrate the characters. These are carefully photographed, placed in a mixed media environment, and subsequently collaged – allowing me to generate a final print that is compatible for textile print- both digitally and in a screen printing environment.