Perfectly beautiful yet perfectly destructive just like nature; tiger is a divine creation and charismatic mega fauna of a natural world. The tiger consists entirely of unanswered questions, the complexity of creation, the sheer magnitude of god’s power and the inscrutability of divine will. As William Blake wonders what immortal hand or eye/ dare frame thy fearful symmetry? But this is not true, in recent times the demands of tiger’s each and every body part from China has resulted in mass poaching, as a result 1411 of these bravura creatures left in wild. Thus, tigers are competing with expanding human population and industry for land, food and unending greed.
With an initiative to save tigers from becoming extinct species, Aircel took upon the mission ‘Save Our Tigers’. It strongly believes that a belief can make a world of difference. Aircel has partnered with Sanctuary Asia, NDTV, WWF (Support Initiative Fund), and some of the India’s most credible and capable tiger experts to work towards the protected areas of the Brahmaputra Valley of Assam. To further support it, and spread the awareness, they have invited 16 artists from all over India to express their thoughts and ideas visually. The paintings by the eminent artists will be auctioned. The fund will be used to the justified demands of the forest officials, government authorities and local communities in and around tiger landscapes.
The artists have used their artistic grammar to bring the thinking and attentiveness in common people. Somewhere the shooting gun is filled with flowers; where as lotus has been symbolized as ahimsa along with a tiger. An artist call attention to remain ‘Human’, others makes a statue of tiger in an awe of extinction, and one of them portrays the fading ‘beauty of fear’ among children. One of the artists thinks of a tiger as a creature with heart, peace, mind and family. He doesn’t want to disturb him with gun or hunt. But all the work leads to the same voice that tigers are the apex of the food pyramid that constitutes to the forest eco system and are hence very vital for well being of the human.
1. Ajay Zharotia’s theme based work In Our Hands has been derived from Indian mythology. He believes in the creative power of nature. The hands around tiger are transforming creative energy into the protective power for tiger. Lotus in the hand shows the delicate balance of nature and the awareness which is needed to maintain it. His concern is beautifully molded in the flow of colors and symbolism.
2. Amarendra Maharana usually fetches his nostalgic feelings in his paintings. In Phony Tigers, he directly speaks that artificiality never shows reality. The boys and a cat imitating a game of fun and fear as the real tiger don’t exist anymore. The artist sense that the beauty of fear will disappear one day…
3. Aparna Caur’s Love shot in oil is a humorous work on a serious issue. She conveys the message of love. Here the gun is filled with flowers instead of bullets. The beautiful work says if we have love and compassion for them we will never kill them.
4. Gita thinks that every work of art is an extension of nature. Her work Indian Yellow is based on preserving the tiger. The portrait of tiger is done with bright hues in acrylic so that its beauty is saved from disappearing.
5. Jai Zharotia has beautifully brought human and tiger together in a baby cot in his style of painting Circle Of Life. The milk bottle highlights the urgency and the amount of love needed towards this wonderful animal. The head of the joker shows the joy of co-existence as well as remarks on a man’s double attitude towards the animals.
6. K G Narendra Babu favors tiger among animals for its pure aesthetics. In his work Dream Tiger, he has given a form to the stories planted on his mind during childhood, his mind is a storage house and he tells stories through his work.
7. Krishnendu Porel firms his belief in his work Let Them Grow In Forest. He describes visually in acrylic medium that let tiger grow in forest or else tigers will have to be cloned. The green background of his painting shows the forest but some faded violet shades interpret the ultraviolet rays of sun causing rapid deforestation. There are a number of cut out images of tigers with grey, black and white symbolizing the cloned tigers.
8. Laxman Aelay deals with feelings and tradition in his painting The Pride. The artist thinks that not only humans have feelings but tigers too have. He has focused on saving the traditional art form and heritage. The tiger has been drawn and colored in traditional way as the background has been adorned with floral motifs.
9. Niladri Paul has experienced tiger through documentaries and films. He observed the community; the tiger’s ways of surviving, their life with siblings and spouse, their peaceful world without human. The artist has tried to draw out these feelings in Not a Predator with bright hues rather than showing hunter that we all associate with the tiger.
10. Niren Sen Gupta has a story back in his mind from the days when man with the help of villagers used to trap and kill tigers and hangs the skin to show off their bravery to the greed of money for poachers. The entire concept is portrayed in two sections of Save Tiger, it clearly illustrate the innocence of tiger against the evil trap of poachers.
11. Pratul Dash’s subject Escaping revolves around social issues. In this work the indigenous tiger is trying to escape from the concrete jungle of India. There is half sculpted image of Gandhi at the corner, which is a symbol of non-violence. It seems that artist is concerned about a lot of violence in South East Asia on animals.
12. Prittam Priyalochan has tried to predict the future of tiger in our universe in Statue Of A Golden Tiger. He worries that the coming generation will see him in zoo or animation so he saved him in a statue. His ink and acrylic medium brings out his controlled spontaneity, which he thinks is the out come of the process of flowing ink on the surface.
13. Sandeep Jigdung has focused on deforestation and hunting of animals as the main theme in his work Protection. The remains of tiger will make us realize how foolish and selfish we have been. For our unending demands these foot prints will also vanish, never to be seen again. The entire concept has been encapsulated beautifully in his realistic work.
14. Sanjay Bhattacharya has coined his work The Innocence. To save tigers he has shown Buddha’s lotus as a message of ahimsa. The illustrative work has been masterly created with oil. The jungle with olive green, flower in silver, the petals or the stars flowing all over and the beautiful bright tiger are in synch with nature.
15. Shivani Bharadwaj has portrayed a tiger that is graceful, sad and staring for a hope. A story Life Of A Ti written by her has complimented the composition. Her idea of writing and painting leaves no room for interpretations or any speculations. The grace of tiger is fading because of the human greed, as we see the back of the tiger in dull hues like that of concrete.
16. Vineeta Das Gupta in her work The Hunt raises a voice “Obliterating the real hunters and saving the poachers….!! Is this the legacy we are living for our posterity?” This awareness has been portrayed in her acrylic medium work where a human wearing a mask of a tiger.