Anoli Perera

My work engages critically on thematic that range from women’s issues, history, myth to identity, colonialism and post-colonial anxieties.


Anoli Perera is an artist,  and also writes on art and related matters. Her studies in Political Science, Economics and Sociology at the University of Colombo in Sri Lanka in the early 1980s were followed by a postgraduate diploma in international affairs from the Bandaranaike Center for International Studies, Sri Lanka. From 1988 to 1992 she lived in the USA, where she started her career as a visual artist. Hailed as the pioneering contemporary woman artist in Sri Lanka who ushered in a form of art that is informed by feminism and craft art practices, her work engages critically on thematics that range from women’s issues, history, myth to issues of identity, colonialism and post-colonial anxieties. Her works have been exhibited in Colombo Scope, Colombo, Sri Lanka, 2019; 4th Edition of Kochi Muziris Biennale, Kochi, India, 2018; Colombo Art Biennale, 2009, 2012 & 2014; 'Artful Resistance' Museum of Anthropology, Vienna, Austria, 2009 and Museum der Weltkulturen, Frankfurt, Germany, 2010; Separating Myth from Reality (Art Festival), Fukuoka Asian Art Triennale, Japan, 2002  amongst others.  Her work was included in the exhibition, ‘Greetings from India’ organized as part of  5th Edition of Jimei x Arles International Photo Festival in November 2019 in China. She was invited to show at the launching exhibition of the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Sri Lanka, ‘One Hundred Thousand Small Tales’, 2019.

Her writings on contemporary Sri Lankan art has been published in a number of publications including Art Asia Pacific (Australia), South Asia Journal for Culture (Sri Lanka), Frontline (India), Asian Art Archive (Hong Kong) and numerous art catalogs and books on Sri Lankan art.  Her book, H. A. Karunaratne published in 2019 documents the art practice of a master artist in Sri Lanka.

Anoli Perera is a co-founder of the Theertha International Artists Collective, a progressive art initiative based in Colombo. She currently lives alternatively in New Delhi, India and Colombo, Sri Lanka.