Faculty Co-Director
Atreyee Gupta

Assistant Professor, History of Art Department, Atreyee Gupta’s area of specialization is global modernisms and contemporary art, with a special emphasis on South and Southeast Asia and its diaspora. Her research and teaching interests cluster around visual and intellectual histories of twentieth-century art; the intersections between the Cold War, the Non-Aligned Movement, and art after 1945; new media and experimental cinema; and the question of the global more broadly. Gupta is presently completing a monograph on abstraction in interwar and postwar painting, sculpture, photography, and experimental film in South Asia. Her co-edited books include The Postwar Reader (with Okwui Enwezor and Ulrich Wilmes) and Global Modernism/s: Infrastructures of Contiguities, ca. 1905–1965 (with Hannah Baader and Patrick Flores). The former emerges from the international conference, Postwar - Art between the Pacific and the Atlantic, 1945–1965, co-convened at Haus der Kunst, Munich with Enwezor and Wilmes. The latter emerges from an international conference co-convened at Haus der Kulturen der Welt (House of World Culture) in Berlin with Baader and Flores. Gupta's essays have appeared in edited volumes, exhibition catalogs, and journals such as Art Journal, Yishu, and Third Text. Her research has been supported by the Social Science Research Council, New York; the Getty Research Institute, Los Angeles; the Goethe Institut and Haus der Kunst, Munich; and, more recently, the Art Histories and Aesthetic Practices at Forum Transregionale Studien, Berlin, an initiative of the Kunsthistorisches Institut Florenz, Max-Planck-Institut. Before coming to Berkeley in 2017, Atreyee Gupta was the Jane Emison Assistant Curator of South and Southeast Asian Art at the Minneapolis Institute of Art. 

Faculty Co-Director
Asma Kazmi

Asma Kazmi is an assistant professor in the Department of Art Practice and the Berkeley Center for New Media at UC Berkeley. She is a research-based artist who combines virtual and material objects to explore simultaneity — a tug of more than one time and place. Her work involves long-term engagement with cities, architecture, plants, animals, stones, and other matter to locate vestiges of relations forged by the legacies of colonialism and post-colonial contexts. Combining visual and textual detritus from western and non-western historical manuscripts, photographs, archival material, fragments of locations, and mixing them with her own fabulations, Kazmi tells intertwining stories about Islam, Muslim culture, complex trade routes, global flows of people and commodities, labor, colonial and indigenous knowledge systems, and interspecies entanglements.

Asma Kazmi’s selected exhibitions include: Bi-City Biennale of Urbanism/Architecture, Shenzhen, China; San Francisco Art Commission Gallery, San Francisco; the Espacio Laraña, University of Seville, Spain; the Commons Gallery, University of Hawaii in Honolulu; Faraar Gallery, Karachi, Pakistan; Elaine L. Jacob Gallery, Wayne State University, Detroit; Wattis Institute of Contemporary Art, San Francisco; San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art, San Jose, CA; Utah Museum of Contemporary Art, Salt Lake City; Queens Museum of Art, NY; H&R Block Space, Kansas City; The Guild Gallery, New York; and Galerie Sans Titre, Brussels, Belgium; LACE (Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions); 18th Street Arts Center, Santa Monica; Contemporary Art Museum, St. Louis; Gallery 210, University of Missouri St Louis; MassArt Film Society, Boston; Hunt Gallery, Webster University, St Louis; and Gallery 400, University of Illinois in Chicago. Kazmi is the recipient of many grants including the Townsend Fellowship; the Hellman Fellow Fund award; the BCNM Seed Grant; Al-Falah Grant; the Fulbright to India; Faculty Research Grant, CalArts; the Great Rivers Biennial Grant, Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis; the Rocket Grant, Spencer Museum of Art at the University of Kansas; and the At the Edge: Innovative Art in Chicago, Gallery 400, University of Illinois in Chicago.

Dipti Mathur

Dipti Mathur is a collector of modern and contemporary South Asian art. Her ongoing interests lie in working with institutions in the US to promote a broader cross-cultural understanding and study of contemporary Indian art. She has served on the Board of Trustees and Collection Committees of several museums, and Chairs the South Asia Art Initiative at UC Berkeley, and the Arts Council of the South Asia Institute at Harvard University. She is a founding member of the Asian Contemporary Art Consortium, San Francisco.

Raj and Helen Desai

Raj and Helen Desai are long-time friends and supporters of the Institute for South Asia Studies. Helen Crane Desai is an alumnus of the Department of History of Art (BA 1952, MA 1954) and  Raj Desai, did his MS in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department. They are active board members of the California Institute of Integral Studies, and both are devoted leaders and members of a wide range of Indian-American and Asian-American arts and cultural organizations, as well as with several environmental and civil liberties organizations. Other projects include the PT&T Building in Oakland, Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley, the Valley Bank office building in Reno, remodel of the Rincon Post Office Heritage Building in San Francisco and a range of multi-story, ductile concrete moment frame office buildings and steel buildings in the city, San Jose and across California.

Renu Agrawal

Renu Agrawal has over 25 years of experience in growing companies and transforming business models.  She is on the Board of Luther Burbank Corporation (NASDAQ:LBC) and a member of their audit and risk committee.  She has held several leadership positions, most recently serving as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Wells Fargo’s (NYSE:WFC) Financial Institutions Group. Prior to that, she oversaw Wells Fargo’s International Treasury Management business and played a leadership role in the Wells Fargo-Wachovia merger. Earlier, Renu was Chief Operating Officer at ValleyCrest Companies and Quisic Corporation. She began her career as a scientist at Polaroid and worked at McKinsey & Company for several years.  Renu is a founding member of Neythri, a global community of South Asia professional women committed to helping each other succeed. In 2019, she received the National Asian Pacific American Corporate Achievement Award. Ms. Agrawal holds an M.B.A. from MIT Sloan School of Management and a Ph.D. in Materials Science and Engineering from MIT. She graduated with a B.Tech in Metallurgy from IIT, Kanpur.

Kaushie Adiseshan and Anand Rajaraman

Anand Rajaraman is an entrepreneur, venture capitalist, and an academic based in Silicon Valley. Anand is a Founding Partner at Rocketship.vc, a global venture capital firm that has backed many high-growth startups all over the world. Prior to starting Rocketship, he was Senior Vice President at Walmart Global eCommerce, where he co-headed @WalmartLabs, focused at the intersection of social, mobile, and commerce. Anand was also a Founding Partner of Cambrian Ventures, an early-stage venture capital firm, and has backed iconic Silicon Valley companies including Facebook and Lyft.

In 1996, Anand co-founded Junglee, an e-commerce pioneer that was acquired by Amazon. He helped launch the transformation of Amazon.com from a retailer into a retail platform, enabling third-party retailers to sell on Amazon.com's website. He has also been active in academia, where his research publications have won many prestigious awards. His textbook “Mining of Massive Datasets,” co-authored with Jeff Ullman and Jure Leskovec of Stanford University, has over a million downloads and has been translated into several languages.

Anand and his wife Kaushie are prominent donors and ChaloGive supporters. They have donated extensively to COVID relief efforts both in the US and in India. They have both also endowed Chairs and supported young faculty with research grants at Stanford University and the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras. Anand has helped create and fund the IIT Madras Entrepreneurship Fund to boost entrepreneurship at his alma mater. Kaushie and Anand also support several causes around literacy, health, and animal welfare in the US and India.