Raghubir Kintisch

Raghubir Kintisch is a multi-disciplinary artist who uses paint, sound, video, installation, performance, writing, community engagement and yogic technology to dismantle the boundaries between spiritual and artistic practices. She is interested in exploring the role of artist as intermediary bridging history, culture, politics and states of consciousness. In much of her work, she uses found footage, archival imagery, sound-bites and samples, crowd-sourced anecdotes and stories as well as transcribed interviews in order to weave narratives about the cultural and familial inheritance of rites and rituals that influence gender politics and power dynamics.

In this installation, SUPERPOWERFUL, Kintisch has included 4 large-scale oil paintings depicting Spiritualist women in the throes of their superpower; psychic and paranormal acuity was something that women were paradoxically applauded and punished for. Spiritualism in the 19th century gave women unprecedented power; they spoke in public, were founders and leaders of organizations, wrote newspaper articles and make a lot of money as trance mediums and clairvoyants. Spiritualist women took refuge in the freedom that this living gave them, however many were silenced, shut down, arrested and jailed for fraud or witchcraft.   

Blossoming as creative and spiritual beings, the women depicted in these paintings performed their “magic acts” for people who wanted to speak to their dear departed loved ones, those who wanted to make financial investments, as well as famous dignitaries like Winston Churchill who benefited from their” inspired” war strategies. Mary Marshall (1842-1884), Kathleen Goligher (1898- ) and Helen Duncan (1897 –1956) were well known in the United Kingdom for their supernatural abilities; Ms. Duncan being the last person in England to be punished and subsequently jailed for witchcraft. Organizations are still fighting to clear these women’s tarnished reputations as well as to re-establish their historic power and influence.