People > Advisory Board > Urmila Mohan

Urmila Mohan is an anthropologist and curator of material culture and religion with a focus on textiles and Hinduism in India and Indonesia. She is currently an adjunct faculty at NYU’s Gallatin School for Individualized Study, New York. Urmila is the founder and co-editor of Jugaad: A Material Religions Project and has published articles and chapters on materiality, praxis and aesthetics in the context of religion. Her teaching and research interests include a focus on India and Indonesia through the study of Material and Visual Culture, Religion, Praxeology and Power.

Urmila is currently co-editing a volume on the role of praxis in material culture (Bloomsbury 2020). In 2018 she curated an exhibition on the ceremonial uses of textiles collected by Margaret Mead and Gregory Bateson in 1930s Bali, Indonesia. Recent publications include the accompanying catalogue “Fabricating Power with Balinese Textiles” (University of Chicago Press/BGC) as well as “Editorial; Marching the Devotional Subject: The Bodily and Material Cultures of Religion” (with J.-P. Warnier) and “Religion and Ritual: The Modern Religio-colorscape” in A Cultural History of Color in the Modern Age.

A transdisciplinary scholar who works across anthropology, history, design and art, Urmila develops and teach courses that connect these fields. An example of her approach can be found here. Her research has been funded by Victoria and Albert Museum (Nehru Trust for Indian Collections), London; Asian Cultural Council, New York; Coby Foundation Ltd., New York, and Rotary International. 


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