Indian American artist honored by Passaic County, New Jersey

Passaic County’s Board of Commissions, led by Director John Bartlett (center) recognizes the achievements and leadership of resident Ela Shah (at Bartlett’s left) during ceremonies marking AAPI Month. Photo: Courtesy Fred Levine

Well-known Indian American artist Ela Shah was honored during Asian American and Pacific Islander month by the Passaic County (NJ) Board of Commissioners recently.

Shah was recognized by the Commissioners for her many achievements including one-person shows in India and the US;  the award-winning documentary film and companion book of the same name “Ela: Breaking Boundaries” and her leadership of the National Association of Women Arts in New York, a press release from Shah said.

The citation reads in part that the Commissioners “…publicly recognize and applaud ELA SHAH for the significant contributions she has made, and the exemplary service and leadership she has unselfishly devoted to the County of Passaic and to the community.”

Shah was also a 2024 recipient of the SHAKTI THE POWER, award. Presented by Royal Albert’s Palace, the award is named in honor of late Shobhana Patel, who was dedicated to women’s empowerment.

Shah is an award-winning contemporary artist who studied traditional Indian arts and miniatures while in India, where she completed her undergraduate degree.

She moved to the United States in the ‘70s with her late husband, Dr. Bipin Shah, and completed her MFA in sculpture at Montclair State University.



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