Saturday, January 18, 2014

Freedom of Thought, Ritual and Reason and more..


Freedom of Thought
( work on display)
The Leela Palace, Chennai is showcasing an exhibition titled ‘Freedom of Thought’ for an entire month. Featuring the works of Sanjeeva Rao, Srinivas Reddy and S Natraj, the exhibition promises to be a true delight for all the art connoisseurs. the exhibit is one of the programs brought by Apparao Galleries.

Sanjeeva Rao focuses more on the theme of the painting and chooses his medium only accordingly while Natraj experiments with his canvas and his paintings always feel like they are a dream. They give the watcher a sense of flying. Srinivas Reddy's paintings are very intense in their nature and almost always make the watcher ponder about their message.

The show on view till 8th February 2014.

Ritual and Reason
( work on display)
Apparao Galleries, Chennai are showcasing the works of eminent artists like Alexis Kersey, Jogen Chowdhary, Laxma Goud, Sakti Burman, Shilpa Gupta, F.N. Souza, Madhvi, Mithu Sen, Neeta Gajam, N. Ramachandran, S.H. Raza and others.
Titled ‘Ritual and Reason’, this exhibition will evoke the sensuality in art and present it in a whole new light. Each artist has brought out this theme on a different medium and explained the reason behind choosing that particular theme. 

The exhibition will be on view from 16th Jan to 26th Feb 2014.

We are Ours

Clark House Initiative, Mumbai presents a spectacular collection of artistic manifestos that have been created by renowned contemporary Indian artists. The exhibition is titled 'We Are Ours: A Collection of Manifestos for The Instant' and curated by Himali Singh Soin.

Some of the participating artists include Abhishek Hazra, Hetain Patel and Aakash Nihalani. The visitors get to see at the various expressions through manifestos. All the artists will share a common platform - an A4 sheet of paper. 
The show is on view till 31st January 2014.

Art of the Ink
( work on display)
Malaka Spice art space, Pune, presents an exhibition of paintings by Umakant Nivrutti Kanade. The artist weaves a magical spell with his black and white works. His work shows his keen and accurate observation of the power of these colours, their tones, values and moods. 
The medium of his work is, pen and ink on canvas. He holds a Govt. Diploma in Art Painting from Abhinav Kala Mahavidyalaya. His work has been part of Auctions in Italy, United Kingdom and India. He has many private collections in India as well as abroad.

The show is on view till 31st January 2014.

(News reports by Sushma Sabnis)


Ink and inherent rhythms
Mind-blowing cityscapes unravel on paper in Thomas Henriot’s Across The City
(Thomas Henriot in front of his painting Benaras 2013)
The Calcutta Arts Club has brought French artist Thomas Henriot’s works in ink on paper Across The City to Chennai. Thomas Henriot has worldwide representation by galleries, and he lives among Rio de Janeiro, Havana and Paris. He is currently in India as part of the Calcutta Arts Club’s artist’s residency programme.
Beginning strokes
“The Chinese say the first stroke is the beginning of life,” says Thomas. Every stroke alters the composition, and Thomas works with an inherent rhythm, letting his drawing play out like a dance. Fascinated by Chinese painters such as Shitao and Zuta, Thomas formally studied the art. Tradition required that he modify his stroke under his master’s directive, which he never could. “Perhaps if I tried, in 10 years, it could happen!” The realm of ink and wash reaches grandiose proportions in Thomas’ multiple panels, lengthy scrolls and piano folds. “I start small and then the painting just grows. I don’t worry about getting the perspective or proportion right. Of course, I have the skill as an artist to progressively achieve the look I want.” For Thomas, there is no first drawing. He makes no attempt to control the final composition: an implicit belief in his ability and acquired skills evolve his travelogues on paper.
We are standing in front of his multi panel work of Harlem 2013, a church in New York. “I always start at the centre,” he answers, pointing to a figure in the entrance arch. Curiously, it is exactly the point I zeroed in the first time I saw Harlem 2013, confirming his innate connect with people and place. Paris, a triptych, has bones amidst corrals of roses, death within life. Thomas was inspired by a dream to make the large and complex work titled Tanger In Morocco. The building rendition appears like caricatured trompe l’oeil with intricate details concealed between ornate grills, windows and nooks. A 22-metre-long work on Cuba and the newspaper as symptom of society occupies an entire gallery wall. Thomas’ ink and brush techniques reference the art of architectural sketches and graphic art, inviting a direct engagement to explore his enigmatic storylines.
Interactive process
For Thomas, the process is more important than the outcome and the freedom to work by improvising and experimentation. “I like it that I cannot always know the size of the paper and not all the panels match exactly.” He paints as we see the world, part views, never all at once. Unlike illustrative art where the story comes first, for Thomas it is “first drawing, then story”. Inks and rice paper are both long lasting media. Placing Japanese rice paper on surfaces, Thomas rubs an inked brush over to get various textures through. He always uses a brush, never a pencil, saying, “Ink becomes the paper.”
I ask him, “How do you work? Do you put up the sheets on a wall?” “I put them on the floor. I learned ballet and being on the floor is natural. Coming down to earth is a humbling experience. It does not matter it is me; I am just a medium and I happen to be there to receive.” Working in crowded places, sometimes in prohibitive areas, Thomas engages with his audience who watch him paint, making it a collective experience. He always finds a protective force. “People gather round me, but they make sure nothing interferes. The space of painting becomes a human space.” India is crucial for both Henriot’s meditative approach to painting and in discovering the closeness of life to death. “India makes you conscious of this. Even as an old building was deteriorating, I found it full of life, birds and animals. Next to death, life begins.”
(The exhibition is on at Lalit Kala Akademi till January 19 from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
( Report by Sujatha Shankar Kumar for The Hindu)

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