ArtSlant - Recently added en-us 40 Bikash Poddar - Gallerie Ganesha - April 4th - May 7th <p><span style="font-size: large;">Shobha Bhatia, Director, Gallerie Ganesha presents a solo show titled "Recent Works in watercolour on paper" by Kolkata-based artist&nbsp;Bikash&nbsp;Poddar.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Born in 1954 in Kaliyaganj, North Bengal,&nbsp;Bikash&nbsp;Poddar&nbsp;studied at the College of Art and Craft, Kolkata to complete his five years of diploma in Applied Art with a gold medal. He turned to full time painting in the nineties, following his success of his shows of watercolours in Delhi and Mumbai. He has shown his works in nearly 25 solo and group shows in India and abroad. His works are with collectors and corporate houses in Delhi, Mumbai, USA, Hongkong, Canada, Australia and Singapore besides others.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Bikash&nbsp;Poddar&nbsp;is one of our best known landscape painters from Bengal. His landscapes reflect the flow of colour that Bengal art assimilated from Chinese and Japanese calligraphic art and blended with the detailed depiction of monuments and human figures we find in our own miniatures.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Writes art critic Suneet Chopra in the catalogue essay: &ldquo;Indeed, his early works consisted of landscapes in miniature format with highly detailed architecture: ruined temples, weathered habitations and boats by the waterside. What struck me then was the proportions of the human figures that blended beautifully with the landscape and yet held their ground in a symbiotic relationship that evoked the relation between man and his creations together. Since then he has blown up these miniatures in scale in a manner that builds a harmony between forms and the formless flows of colour, inviting the eye to explore space while at the same time following the narrative of his figures set in the theatrical backdrop of architectural forms. These romantic reveries of spaces in the mind are successful largely because of his excellence as a painter of rare quality without which his landscapes would have been reduced to being mere pictures.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">These they are not. They span the hiatus between two great neighbouring cultures, those of India and China, the first highlighting detailed forms bursting with life while the other evokes a sense of the essence of aesthetic expression of the human presence at its most minimal. The success of these works of his resides in how he balances the two with a delicacy few artists achieve.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <div> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Then there are his boldly coloured works that concentrate on objects of daily use, another important trend in Bengal art that he manages to balance with large areas of formless space. His works are an important contribution to the art of Bengal, dialectical and evocative and ofcourse memorable for the quality of its execution. This is what makesBikash&rsquo;s work unforgettable both visually and in terms of the feelings it evokes.</span></p> </div> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 05:49:08 +0000 Chintan Upadhyay - Gallery Espace - April 16th - May 31st <p><span style="font-size: large;">Renu Modi, Director Gallery Espace, presents a solo show by&nbsp;Chintan Upadhyay titled&nbsp;"<em>Jaane Bhi Do Yaaron-Redux"</em>&nbsp;at Gallery Espace.&nbsp;</span><span style="font-size: large;">Upadhyay has used second hand knitted garments to create a metaphor for &ldquo;the faceless people of our city&rdquo;. He converts the gallery space into what looks like &ldquo;Sarojini Nagar market&rdquo;, the walls and floor of the gallery replete with sculptural installations and photographs of faceless forms and figures in stuffed woollen garments.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>Chintan Upadhyay&rsquo;s art practice has remained focused on ideas of mass production, production of desires and colossal wastes and mechanical artificiality of modern landscapes. These themes have found echoes in both his gallery bound and site specific works.</p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&ldquo;I have been working with site-specific projects since over a decade. In 2010/11, I was working in El Salvador on a residency project where I asked residents to give me their second-hand clothes. The works made with this cloth and filled with sand were installed on the beach and soon the entire area looks like a land inundated with bodies. There has always been a sense of &lsquo;death&rsquo; in my work, though not in a morbid way. Even the baby sculptures that I have done for the last few years are never alive, they will never talk and they are genetically controlled but there is so much life going around them. The idea of working with second hand clothes came from there and when Renu Modi asked me to work on a show last year, I knew I could create another site-specific story.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Just like his baby sculptures which have a multitude of narratives imprinted on them, his present works too are multi-layered. On one hand, Upadhyay, seeks to talk about the dignity of labour, and &ldquo;about those invisible people we do not notice in our daily lives.&rdquo; And on the other, he questions the faceless fa&ccedil;ade of an urban space and city life where we are all strangers scared of &ldquo;each other&rsquo;s strangeness&rdquo;.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">In all his works, hence, whether these are wall-mounted installations created by stitching dozens of woollen clothes together, or photographs of a person whose face and entire body has been concealed with a woollen garment, or small boxes stuffed with toy-like woollen shapes, there is a sense of both the bizarre and the obvious.</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&ldquo;I wanted to buy second hand garments and not borrow from people I knew,&rdquo; Says Upadhyay who shifted from Mumbai to Delhi three years ago, &ldquo;so that no connections could be traced back to the person who wore them. Doesn&rsquo;t the city also think like this? Do we ever want to know who these people are who work for us, who live on the streets? I want to talk about the idea of memories attached to objects in these works. These are also narratives about domestic spaces and public spaces &ndash; people we meet and see but don&rsquo;t care to know.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">Ask him if he didn&rsquo;t have the urge to create another baby figure, he says. &ldquo;These works have a similar childlike and playful projection, although with a dark shade. The boxes with stuffed garments are like toys. So in a way these metaphors are not divorced from the spirit of my previous works.&rdquo;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <div> <p><span style="font-size: large;">No wonder, Upadhyay says this new body of work is also a throwback to his own childhood, one in which he saw his mother knit for both &ldquo;passion and business&rdquo;. In the show, there is a 7-feet-long sweater he has created in collaboration with his mother.</span></p> </div> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p><span style="font-size: large;">&nbsp;</span></p> <p>&nbsp;</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 05:46:02 +0000