Dilli ki Diva

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Outside Time - Sculptor Himmat Shah's retrospective at the KNMA

This article was done for the Asia Art Pacific Website. Unusually, they published a far larger review then they usually do. ‘Hammer on the Square’ (On the significance, Shah says: “When a man’s mind gets blocked it is necessary to use a hammer. A hammer sans the hand fixed on a cube - it says, ‘Jaago logon’ *), is the first retrospective ever of the nomadic artist, who was born in 1933 (and it's timely. Himmat Shah will be awarded the Legends of India award this week). It’s also a very comprehensive exhibition, featuring 300 of his works, 215 of whi... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 7/5/16

A treatise on art writing (and this time it's personal)

'Don’t tell me the moon is shining; show me the glint of light on broken glass'. ~Anton Chekhov  To start with, a disclaimer. If I was pushed to create 'art', I could probably draw stick figures. And I've had some fun growing up destroying clay while others around me create beautiful pots. But that's pretty much the point. I enjoy art - especially paintings (and books, films, music, dance, theater, jewelery, clothes, architecture etc. It's amazing how much art we surround ourselves with in our daily lives). I appreciate and am humbled by the beauty and the vision that enables some... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 3/31/13


Amrita - A Self-Portrait;  NGMA, Delhi   Self Portait; NGMA, Delhi Fruit Vendors Its difficult not to have heard of Amrita Sher-Gill if you live in Delhi. After all, Delhi's most exclusive and expensive street is named after her. And considering we don't have a Rabindranath Tagore, M.F. Hussain or Raja Ravi Verma street, it makes you wonder who you have to know to be considered unforgettable enough to go down in Indian municipal lexicography? On the list of India's 10 most expensive artists, there's only one woman. And i... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 3/31/13

Indian Paintings; A Historical Lesson

I realized that although I thoroughly enjoyed writing about Indian Art, I loved spending time in the museums a couple of weeks ago, just hanging out with old friends who have now made it big and have their own prints. And for the first time, these were closer friends of mine than my mum's. And she actually liked my choices this time (but so does the rest of the world). I still remember one New Year's day I spent with a favorite family friend at the museum - I still think it was the best use of my hangover day ever. So, here's a short illustrated history of Indian Paintings down the... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 3/31/13

Where's the Art?

 We've got one of the strongest cultures of art and mythology in the world. Unlike other countries, mythology isn't something you read about in books. Rather, it surrounds us in our daily lives right from childhood. Bedtime stories in India are normally mythological. Everyone knows a version of the Ramayana. I can hold conversations with random folk on my favorite character from the Mahabharata and they'll casually reel off examples to support their theories. Similarly, art permeates our lives. Beautiful rangolis are made everyday by housewives and casually wiped up. Statues of Durga and G... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 3/31/13

Indian Art and Pakistan's National Painter

Holi - Wash and Tempera. National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi I have a confession. You can keep every other priceless painting at the National Gallery of Modern Art in Delhi and I'll keep just one, thank you very much. It's called Holi and I can spend hours staring at it. It shows Krishna and Radha in a clinch, is done in shades of yellow and orange, the topic is Hindu while the features are Persian ( almost out of a miniature) with beautiful delicately drawn elongated eyes and it's one of the most sensuous paintings I've seen. It brings to life the fact that Holi is another... [more]
Posted by Dilli ki Diva on 3/31/13