Art News & Views


December, 2011 – January, 2012

Twilight: Solo Show by Huma Mulji
Project 88, Mumbai
November 10, 2011 to January 4, 2012

Huma Mulji’s works look at the futility and conflicts of living in an ever changing urban society. Her works broadly address the visual and cultural overlaps of language, image and taste that collide in stunning technique.

Twilight, Mulji's first solo in India consists of paintings and sculptural installations. The works echo with ironic and farcical juxtapositions of the wearing down of metropolitan sparkle and spectacle. Material plays an important role in Mulji’s works and is indicative of content. The enamel paint, the particular preference of colour, rusting elements, the vulnerability of a taxidermy bird, and the visible wiring are all elements which challenge the conviction of the real and the illusive, through a visual narrative that unexpectedly becomes incongruous.

The photographic works are overlaid with almost lace-like grilles, rendered close to invisible. The strategy suggests visual access and a physical barricade, albeit fragile, a state of captivity and sanctuary simultaneously.

Deities, Demons, and Dudes with'Staches: Indian Avatars by Sanjay Patel
Tateuchi Thematic Gallery, Asian Art Museum, San Francisco
November 11, 2011 to April 22, 2012

Pixar artist Sanjay Patel's modern interpretations of Hindu epics and deities engage with centuries-old historical works, giving them a complete fresh context. In his works classical Indian art is united with animation-style imagery in a striking new display. Patel, a second-generation Indian American, captures the spirit and energy of these timeless figures and stories, illustrating them in his own 21st century visual idiom in a show titled Maharaja, which opened on October 21, 2011 and explored the realm of India’s legendary kings.

In November, the museum handed Patel the keys to the interior gallery, where presented his Disneyesque illustrations, a delightful kingdom of mythic Indian characters, in a show called Deities, Demons and Dudes With ’Staches. In 2012, the museum will mount its most ambitious contemporary show, Phantoms of Asia: Contemporary Awakens the Past, featuring more than 30 living Pan-Asian artists exploring themes of spirituality.

Rustic Reveries of Bollywood: Solo Show by Vinita Dasgupta
Art Konsult, New Delhi
November 24 to December 18, 2011

Art Konsult presented Rustic Reveries of Bollywood, a solo exhibition by Vinita Dasgupta. Vinita presented a series of paintings of old as well as new Bollywood posters. The works of her present series, Mumbai Meri Jaan, mostly oil and acrylic on canvas, captured the exact essence of the Mumbai Film Industry.

Vinita Dasgupta’s works presented the significance of Bombay’s cinematic idiom, which lies in the fact that it represents the hegemonic vocabulary of cultural terrain in Indian.

Intangible Interlocution: An Anthology of Belonging
Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai
November 25 to December 13, 2011

Rekha Rodwittiya, a committed feminist works to celebrate the ideals of womanhood and explore the multiple avatars that a positioned stance of female empowerment holds. The show Intangible Interlocution: An Anthology of Belonging comprises of three segments. Segment 1 is named Letters of the Universe: When the Sun and the Moon Fall Asleep, Only Then Can I Dance So Naked, which displays a series of water colours, popular stickers & personal memorabilia on water colour paper. In Segment 2, which is named An Anatomy of Recollection, a series of digital inkjet prints of autobiographic photo-images and hand painted water colour on water colour paper are displayed. In Segment 3, which is called Diagrams of an Interior Space, a series of acrylic & oil on canvas has been displayed.

Metonymical Subtext, Solo Show of paintings by Jaideep Mehrotra
Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai
December 1, 2011 to December 15, 2011

In his paintings, Jaideep traces the process that aesthetically connects the painted canvas with the text that is applied over it. The blending of these two layers culminates into a new visual with different intellectual connotation.

Metonymical Subtext is the result of a three years long search into how the shifting of traditional parameters alters the perceptions and meanings of an object or idea.

In his works Jaideep constantly juxtaposes the historical with the contemporary, the traditional with the modern. His approach does not conform to the traditional ideas and insights.

Confessions of an Evil Orientalist by Waswo X. Waswo in collaboration with Rajesh Soni and R. Vijay
Gallery Espace, New Delhi
December 7, 2011 to January 15, 2012

Confessions of an Evil Orientalist contains artworks that sways between personal revelation and inspired fantasy. The artist's self-conscious awareness of power relationships, hegemony, and cultural dominance fuses with a poetic questioning of who is the ‘outsider’ and who ‘belongs’. Imagery of Hanuman runs throughout this exhibition, symbolising male aggression, cultural conflict, and the eroticization of ‘the Other’.

Waswo has collaborated with a variety of local artists including the photo hand-colourist Rajesh Soni. He has also produced a series of autobiographical miniature paintings in alliance with the artist R. Vijay.

The Udaipur based artist, Rajesh Soni, is well known for his abilities to hand paint digital photographs and R. Vijay is the grandnephew of historic Rajasthani miniaturist - Ramgopal Vijayvargiya. Early in life R. Vijay was tutored by traditional miniaturists such as Sukhdev Singh Sisodiya and Laxmi Narayan Sikaligar. But he soon developed his own style, which has been called an eclectic mix of Persian and Mogul styles, along with a bit of the Company School of the Indo-British art.

Eyes on Life: Drawings of Satish Gujral
Aakriti Art Gallery
December 9 to December 31, 2011

The set of drawings exhibited in Aakriti Art Gallery done over a period between 2005 and 2011, unfold an entirely different approach. These delightful drawings present his wonderful sense of humour that eschews sarcasm and illuminates geniality. Human suffering that was central to his art in the beginning gave way to tranquility and peace. From around 1960s Gujral was gradually getting inspired by the jubilant aspects of life.

Gujral envisions hope in actions. He depicts these actions often in a descriptive mode leaving a touch of enigma behind. He makes the figures heroic not out of any sense grand achievement, but out of their admission of the ordinary and the unassuming gestures. It is precisely this quality that makes them so special, so buoyant for Satish Gujral.


Why Cross the Boundary, Solo Show of Paintings by V. Ramesh
Threshold, New Delhi
December 9, 2011 to February 18, 2012

Born in 1958 in Andhra Pradesh, V Ramesh lives and works in Vishakhapatnam, where he has been teaching at the Department of Fine Arts, Andhra University, since 1985. In Why Cross the Boundary, V Ramesh will present a new set of works in oils on canvas.

The artist's fluid layers of colour create worlds within worlds. The artist's precise techniques and engaging iconographies lend themselves to powerfully suggestive narratives that have this time included the re-contextualization of some of India's women saint poets along with several of his earlier subjects.

His works lend themselves to a fresco-like format where, both brilliant colours and fine linear drawings with their delicate poetic communications are layered and re-layered in explorations that symbolize multiple facets of identity and personal faith- particularly in terms of the country's literary and sacred traditions. In doing so, they create their own powerful visual vocabulary, compelling the viewer to tend to look deep within even while re-visiting the past.

This show is a collateral event for the India Art Fair.

Soliloquies: Notes from the Drawing Book, Sunil Padwal's solo
Gallery BMB, Mumbai
December 15, 2011 to January 15, 2012

This show is about our toleration of the hypocrisies in the name of development, the never ending corruption, the ancient social and religious cruelties, the communal fanaticism and the various other turpitudes of present day society. Although inspired by reality, these drawings are however semi abstract and fictional - a metaphoric imagery letting way for hundreds of overlapping thoughts. These drawings are culmination of those layers of expressions intended to give the illusion of unspoken reflections.

The title for the show is very meaningful as drawing books are like diaries. Diaries attract for they allow us to see inside another naked soul, experiences, or thoughts or feelings, including comment on current events outside the writer's direct experience.

Contemporary Art Exhibition
Emami Chisel Art, Kolkata
December 19, 2011 to January 7, 2012

Contemporary art in India exists within a plethora of juxtaposed realities, converging different polarities, but at the same time caught in the dichotomies of the rural and urban or industrial. Through enormous global expositions, the young generation of Indian artists is striving hard to excavate their own personal visual dialogue based upon histories, mythologies, beliefs and the practices to show how the conscious absorption of diverse influences can be relevant in evolving a personal yet contemporary language.

The artists included in this show are Ritendra Roy, Debasis Barui, Sajal Kaity, K. Prasun Roy, Barun Chowdhury, Sanhita Ghosh, Tisha Mondal, Snehashis Maity, Amlan Datta, Apu Dasgupta, Jayanta Kr. Paul, Rajesh Bhowmick, Sandip Daptari, Supam Adhikary, Mrinal De, Chandranath Saha, Buddhadev Mukherjee, Mohan Kr. T, Shatrughan Thakur, Kasa Vinay Kumar. The exhibition allows the viewer to punctuate their own readings upon the invocations, thus connecting to the different routes of thought-processes displayed through various mediums and formats of delineation.

Gagawaka: Making Strange by artist Vivan Sundaram
Rabindra Bhavan Gallery, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi
December 21 to December 27, 2011

Rabindra Bhavan Gallery, Lalit Kala Akademi will exhibit Gagawaka: Making Strange which is a cross-over exhibition of art with fashion.

It includes forty-five interesting sculptural garments, based on the concept of the ‘ready-made’ or ‘found-object’. The garments employ an unusual range of materials and objects of daily use like paper-cups, kitchen cleaners etc. Vivan Sundaram experiments with the manner in which these familiar items are transformed, to be interpreted in completely different contexts that amuse as well as amaze the viewer. They are playful, erotic, refined, graceful as well as exaggerated, surrealist and elaborate. Vivan acknowledges the collaboration of young designer, Pratima Pandey, who along with some talented ex-graduates from NIFT, have worked on detailing, fittings and  completion of the garments.


Latest works of Hrushikesh Biswal
Priyasri Art Gallery, Mumbai
Starts from December 21, 2011

Born in Orissa, Hrushikesh currently resides and works in Baroda. His present series of paintings makes you curious regarding the predominance of the images of the male and female duos in his paintings. Johny ML says, ‘There is a strange charm that pervades the loving couples.’ These couples like the traditional Mithuna (Gemini) couples seen along the walls of the ancient Indian temples, create a world of their own and remain there as perpetual young couple in love. There is something romantic about them. At the same time, a deeper look would expose that they are engaged in a game of power, contest of hierarchies and a debate of genders.

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