Over his more than a decade as a sculptor Akhil Chandra Das has steadfastly appreciated the elegance and fact of using limited means to send complex signals. Akhil gives his new body of work the imagery that has an extraordinary, well constructed look. This has been a feature of his sculpture and installations since mid-90. While Akhil’s work has always taken a swipe at the cultural decadence, hypocrisy, capitalism and erosion of values which he evokes through surreal and mythological imageries with a sense of the absurd, disdain, wit and sarcasm, one gets the feeling that he has been totally seduced by illusionary aspects of his imageries he expresses through wood and bronze. For all its surfaces incorporated parts foregrounds ironically the character of a cultural condition rather than the artist’s own interiority. The works are structured around the interactivity of disparate body parts and in their tight and sonorous arrangements, project disunities and interpersonal separations as symptomatic of today’s unstable times. In the attempt to understand the break- up of unities, the loss and the separation between individuals and between the contradictory directions of the self, a sense of an invasive and turbulent past is also conveyed. What we witness here is a retracing of this memory not to exercise it but to research it for artistic processes and self scrutinies. The figures are isolated despite the subtlety of their combinations.
The work in this exhibition operates through humour(or sarcasm) and by stylistic devices such as double entendre, masked humans underneath the mask of a beast. Akhil has cast himself as a goofy, ludicrous thoroughly enjoyable totem with a self-deprecating smile and closed eyes who have achieved some state of bliss. – a kind of pun on the vacuity of present living and consumerism. There is something quite surreal about these sculptural works, both in their juxtaposition of quirky, absurd objects and in their representations of a hypocritical society whose desire for objects. Akhil’s work does not propose any answers or any way out of this imbalance. Instead, he is wry, dispassionate and somewhat accepting observer of conditions that have replaced our values and nature.