The gradual evolution of Modernism in India in the post-independence era is also a unique tale of artistic endeavours, unending struggles and progression of vision against all odds by the artists to give birth to and deliver their individualistic language/s in art that made them the great Masters of Indian art of the twentieth century. The artworks of these Masters thus stand on their own to mark the emblematic journeys of each creator and the empowerment and enlightenment they could attain in their lifetime which is far beyond the realm of material success and social recognition. Even in the second decade of the 21st century, the relevance of Modernism is as apt and significant in the field of visual arts as it was at the time of its inception. Thus, Aakriti Art Gallery takes the pleasure and responsibility in showcasing the works of such Masters of visual arts in India along with a few dynamic young creators who are steadily making their way into the field of the visual arts to shine like the Evening Star, in this edition of the esteemed India Art Fair 2015.
The presentation in the India Art Fair 2015 has been meticulously designed by the Aakriti Art Gallery in two separate sections of classical art and contemporary vision with paintings and drawings of stalwarts and sculptures of new achievers of Indian Visual Arts. Ram Kumar, Jogen Chowdhury, Satish Gujral and Partha Pratim Deb – the names by them narrate the entire tale of how Modernism got its shape in visual arts in our country and how they became some of the most acclaimed artists worldwide.. Along with them there is a Sculpture section which will showcase the works of Akhil Chandra Das, Asim Basu, Subrata Biswas and Tapas Biswas – the names which have achieved best of recognition in the art world because of their accomplishments and skills in handling different mediums of sculpting with expertise and invoking discourse in the past few years. Thus, the gallery in its presentation looks forward to give birth to a plethora of different genres of modern Indian art and its due course of progress into post-modern and henceforth. It is also going to be a conscientious attempt on the part of the host of the show not only to just demonstrate the gradual evolution of modern art in India in its post independence era but also to bring forth the exposition of balance between realism and abstraction through figurative and non-figurative representations that was simultaneous among the artists who propagated modernism in Indian art in the last century and its transcendence through the contemporary successors.
Ram Kumar is the maestro of abstract art in the country whose drawings on paper shall live beyond his times. In this edition of India Art Fair, the audience will get one of the most exciting opportunities to visit Ram Kumar’s art on paper but with coloured contours and patches quite unlike his pen and ink works or monochromatic shades. They are one of the finest non-figurative projections of Ram Kumar executed in the last century on small sheets of paper with random vigour as well as structured finesse. The beauty of these works lay in the spontaneity.
Satish Gujral is best known for his poetic tales of life and love, partition and loss, agony and anguish which he transcends into greater philosophy of existence in this cosmos through his artworks. Creation of solid opaque surface with vibrant shades of colour and playing around with surreal and semi-figurative imagery and motifs is Gujral’s signature on the canvas plane. The most intriguing part of Gujral’s works is the way he blends the content with the form and develops playfulness in handling the medium and devising the technique. The liveliness that is effervescent in almost all his works in whatsoever medium is forever captivating that invites the viewers to an array of inquisitiveness and elucidation where he can delicately pave the path for some very serious subjects within the sphere of obliquely playful mechanism of expression and accuracy of skill and perfection of strokes. From figurative abstraction to complete abstraction, these works are fine tuning of emotions blended with hope and despair for life and the living spirit of time-bound realities as well as timeless faith.
The power and enigma of distorted lines and stokes is mostly for which Jogen Chowdhury as an artist is celebrated. His artistic journey has touched all the facades of Indian art but established his identity as the master of lines and figurative darkness poised with anger through his aesthetic articulations. Aakriti Art Gallery has tried to put forward an ensemble of his semi-figurative drawings in his unique visual language of exposition of human limbs, anatomy and organs with their extreme depictions but in more refined and evocative way. Jogen Chowdhury has always expressed the various shades of human emotions and their acute resemblance in the day-to-day life experiences through a gamut disjointed and distorted lines and strokes which set the palpable discourse of linear journey of life that is in reality the non-linier experiences of being alive.
Partha Pratim Deb has always been known for his non-conventional approach towards art and aesthetics and has an elaborate journey of breaking formal set norms in art through his artistic practice and exposition. In the works that will be showcased in the India Art Fair which include both from a series of his older paintings and also a new set of recent works, he has portrayed the pangs and plights of our times with subtlety epitomizing broader messages of change and evolution, though the setback of anguishes in disguise always remain. Critique to all sorts of subjugation is a prominent trend of Partha Pratim Deb’s works which we shall get to observe in these works as well.
Akhil Chandra Das’s thought process in sculpting revolves around humanist values and social ethos. His works attempt to present the organic reality he has been able to successfully exercise through the formal tenets of sculpting and moulding. The various instinctual facets of the human mind contribute to the making of his concept that he gives shape in his sculptural creativity, where there are shades of darkness, pathos of existence as well as colours rejuvenation and hope. Akhil reacts to the contemporary world order and as a reflex of such situations, he attempts to proliferate something meaningful and contextual in his sculptures both in wood and metal. Akhil’s trend of works is emulating yet with semi-real figures in metal; he builds up torment and existential predicament as a trademark of his works.
Asim Basu gives shape to contemporary imaginations blended with mundane reality in his metal sculptures. He develops a narrative tale against abstraction is his works which stirs a sense of liveliness and dynamism, thus inviting the viewers for not just a visual impact but to feel the essence of existence and being alive.
For Subrata Biswas, creative energy is somewhat like William Blake’s ‘Energy is Eternal Delight’. Subrata has consistently been developing flexible ways of conveying thoughts in his metal works eventually experimenting with the medium over a passage of time with ease and comfort and perpetuating his creative discourse. Myths, folklore and magic can be distinctively identified in his sculptures along with the blend of traditional engraving style. For the sculptor, looking back into deep-rooted indigenous culture is one part of his creative journey to recreate his subjects, which Subrata Biswas has successfully being doing for more than a decade.
Tapas Biswas, too is a master in metal casting whose execution and expression is more experimental and tentative. He is excellent in creating voluminous sculptures but with effective hollowness which make them rather lighter in weight though might seem to be much heavier. There is a whirlpool of energy that floats within the harmony of the structure in his works which attracts the viewers for a close association with the space and vigor each work executed by him states to be.
India Art Fair 2015 will be able to experience all of these expressive mediums and invocative ideations though the artworks of these legendary and successful figures in the art world. It will be absolutely a celebration of creative spirit in its best and Aakriti Art Gallery vouches to make it even better and far more vibrant than ever!