Monday 3 November 2014

‘Energy in Void’ ‘Something’ implied in ‘Nothing’


Shalaka draws inspiration from the Indian metaphysical concept of ‘Shunya’ which is based on the paradox of maximum potential contained with an irreducible minimum that is Emptiness. Thus her creations are but attractive, distinct visuals. Paintings also incorporate scientific theory of Quantum energy of Universe. Quantum energy is an Energy which burst to form into innumerable galaxies, constellations and other components of Universe.
Shalaka Patil
‘Energy in Void’, completely mystifies us by imbibing the concept of the evolution of Universe, its progress and expansion and ultimately the dissolution in itself without disturbing the movement of harmonious whole of the elements of the Universe.
Painting series by Shalaka Patil.

The paintings have various forms on the single plain or textured surface of paper; the forms on paper seem to be evolving non-stop, having life and movement. As we keep mulling over them, they also seem to dissolve. But at the very moment the similar one seems to replace the prior one. This evolution and dissolution represents the cyclical concept of creation, preservation and destruction/dissolution.  Every component of painting- form or colour is unique metaphoric representation of space merging into a related whole. Thus the physical appearance is a Visible Reality but Actuality of an entity is beyond physical or visible reality as put forward by Quantum theory for creation of Universe.  

To speak about it in regards to her paintings, we find that the form and colour refer to Nothing other than itself, but still it has some value in totality that emerge in unison on the Nothingness (here paper canvas becomes a total void or quantum energy  with its plain surface, on which painting is done). This art of the artists can be best described with the help of illustration by Lao Tzu. While explaining the importance of Nothingness or void he said, ‘‘We shape clay into a pot but it is the emptiness inside which holds what we want”. So even though the paper dissolves its identity with emergence of colors and elements on it, still its emptiness plays a major role in shaping the externally visible objective reality.   
Painting series by Shalaka Patil.

Thus, the plain spotless paper forms the base of her creation. It becomes the releasing point of energy to give meaning to various colors and forms on it. And if we associate this interplay with concept of ‘Shunya’, we find that existence of forms and colors get their meaning only due to empty space or Nothingness of paper which is nothing but only a plain textured surface. This surface itself has the potential energy to absorb the colors that are brushed on it. So it is ‘Something’ that appears on ‘Nothing’. Hence, that what is perceived, has negligible scope compared to the unperceived or the emptiness that actually becomes meaningful and important. Thus, there are limitations to what is perceived. When meditated upon this reality with no center or edge gives rise to infinite possibilities. We realize that forms and space are interchangeable according to perception.  

We are interconnected to everything in Nature through the medium of this ‘empty’ space. Our soul and mind are the Emptiness filled with innumerable thoughts (physical elements) that are negative as well as positive. As we mature the thoughts are replaced by new, some are expanded others perish to give place to new ones. All in turn influencing the lifestyle that we follow based upon these elements. Thus evolution, expansion and dissolution become part of human activity, just like Universe. Mind and Soul become the providers of potential energies.

The approach of successive layering and removal of pigment permits the surface to achieve transparency, translucency and opacity. The forms are held together, within mutual associations of attraction and repulsion, of contraction and expansion, thus there is continuous flow of energy involving a person to contemplate like cosmological inflation. All the components of paintings be it paper, water-colors or ink, space consist of positive energy which rests upon one another to create a complete whole. 

It is a blissful experience to view her paintings as it takes us on trail in Universe and also lets us probe into self and find the centre point from where we as individual rise and gain our identity or characteristic, that changes with time and maturity. 
 - by Pankaja JK

The National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai, Ministry of Culture, Government of India

National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai
Ministry of Culture, Govt. of India
Sir C. J. Public Hall
Mumbai- 400 032

The National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai, Ministry of Culture, Government of India, is presenting an exhibition entitled ‘Music and Goddess’. The exhibition is directed by Ranjit Makkuni founder of Sacred World which explores to build bridges between techno and traditional cultures.
Ranjit Makkuni is an international multimedia researcher, artist and designer.  A graduate in architecture from the reputed IIT Kharagpur, Ranjit Makkuni perceived his masters in Design Theory and Methods from University of California. With involvements in many prestigious institutions Ranjit Makkuni is also member of the mentoring group of Nehru Memorial Museum, New Delhi, constituted by the Prime Minister of India.

‘Music and Goddess’-The Exhibition at NGMA (M)
The genesis of art dates back to the early age of humanity. Here we see Makkuni bringing in the rich panorama of artistic forms and designs- from ancient to modern. Going beyond the boundaries of physical landscapes, he brings in multidisciplinary art forms and designs with cords of music and spreads a labyrinth beyond imagination. With this one of its kind exhibition Makkuni communicates a vision for the re-discovery of solitude. Art and Music was never so beautifully brought together.

This exhibition presents advances in interactive art through an exploration of the science, art and spirituality of Music, and its reflections in the Goddess images across Asian cultures. Ranjit Makkuni makes the exhibition a spiritually musical and gracefully interactive. It simply makes a lay person spellbound. It is an audio visual treat for the art and music lovers. The exhibits not only play music but allow viewers to interact with the instrument that plays it and the creative installation that bares it. Majority of the instruments show a connection with the Goddess Sarasvati and hence create a mesmerising spiritual ambiance. The journey to the musical world spreads over the holy pagodas and Bodhisattva paintings. The mystic aura of rhythm leaves the listener engulfed in streams of South East Asian Buddhist monasteries. The exhibition brings sound of music from each and every member of the Mother Nature like birds, bees, water, woods, human body and air.
Through a collection of interactive exhibits employing new musical synthesis based on traditional grammar, interactive multimedia installations and recordings of performances by masters, the project will allow viewers to enter the world of sound and its cultural and spiritual aesthetics.
The display of the exhibition presents both traditional and new instruments based on Indian Sitar, Burmese Saun Harp, Thai Xylophone, Korean Kayagum, Chinese Guzheng and Pipa, Vietnamese Dan Tranh, Javanese & Balinese Gamelan, chanting and many more. New instruments with embedded computation demonstrate interactions through gesture, touch, pull, movement, gaze and kinaesthetic action. In addition, through responsive computing, people by their position, gesture and movements control musical events in exhibition environment.

At National Gallery of Modern Art (M) we have an interesting exhibition inaugurated 28th of this month. And here are the attached details for the same (Press release and images).

Do visit the Gallery as it has much more to touch, see and listen. 
Gallery open from 11 am- 6 pm except Mondays and National Holidays

Wednesday 29 October 2014

I Think (What?) ‘Packing Series’ paintings by Amit Kumar.

Art is a part of individual, community, society and whole world. It is necessary to know why it has so much importance since civilization began. Not many artists have tried to answer it through their art. Generally, an artist creates a piece of art according to the prevailing conditions, like his individual psychology, society’s culture and tradition, political conditions etc and that is all. 
Amit Kumar explores the avenue of highlighting the importance of art and its preservation and how it is preserved (visual art) by hand-painting it under his theme titled ‘Packing Series’ 
Artist Amit Kumar

Art plays a significant role in knowing the past of a country. Especially visual Art portrays the social, economic and political conditions of every era. It is a trusted clue of past. Artist Amit Kumar likes to hold on to these visual treasures and thus portrays them in his paintings.  According to him the works of past in every form of art like painting or literature has its unique symbolism and color. He likes to conserve these things and has come up with his ‘Packing series’ which is his most favorite series. All the paintings in this series are hand painted and as the name suggest- ‘packing’ he shows preservation of these paintings by meticulously painting bubble paper, corrugated paper wrappings around them. It is, as if he wants to keep the traces of history safely packed and saved for future generation. Since his basic objective is to show the preservation of paintings, he has painted varied themes not pertaining from different eras these do not belong to any particular age and there is no uniformity either. Like, he paints modern city, along with Statue of liberty, touches upon Indian Independence era by painting Mahatma Gandhi, presents unforgettable photograph of an Afghan girl, by painting it and showing it wrapped in buble paper et al. Therefore we find the mixture of different forms of visual art ranging from realistic, surreal to abstract. All the artworks help us to rewind the time and feel the difference between the then life’s experience which was different from our times. .According the artist, his art may have minimal value in this technical world his paintings. But it does not bother him and feels that as an artists he has every right to express his feelings without restrictions, no obligation of commitment and totally independent in Nature. Anything that attracted his attention has become his creation in this series. 
Recent work by Amit Kumar

The second series shows Amit Kumar’s keen interest in human psychology, especially of the layman or common man that forms the larger part of the society. The common man actually colors and shapes the characteristic of society. There is a standardized thread of thought among all the common people all over the world. It is ‘Ambition’, the desire to get more better than what one already has. He paints desires of mankind under his series called ‘Ambitious Mankind’. In this series he shows desires of common man. Desire of luxury, comfort, happiness, fame, money keeps life going on. These never ending desires are like the creepers as shown in one of his paintings. New leaves (hopes) represent tender desires unfolding, maturing, sustaining life until they are fulfilled or failed and then they shed away. Till then a new desire seems to bud from the same mind/heart (creeper). Even incase of choice of relations, human beings are often selective and yet, grass seems to be greener on other side and a person always feels dissatisfied with whatever he/she has and wants more and that is nothing but-  A desire. 

An avid lover of poetry and a poet by heart, Amit Kumar expresses his thoughts on desires in verse (Hindi) which states:

क़दमों में अपने जहाँ चाहता हुँ,
मै ज्यादा कही कुछ कहाँ चाहता हूँ l l 

सिकंदर भी हारा था हिंडोसितां में,
मै हारुँ नही, ये दुआ चाहता हूँl  
मै ज्यादा कहीं कुछ कहाँ चाहता हूँ?

मुझको बदनाम करने की साजिश है ये,
जो है मुमकिन नहीं, वो मकाँ  चाहता हुँl 
मै ज्यादा कहीं कुछ कहाँ चाहता हूँ?


I wish to have world at my feet,
I do not expect more than this.

Alexendar too lost to India,
Pray I would never do.
Is it a great deal that I wish to?

It’s a cabal to slander me,
Explore the unexplored destiny.
Is it a great deal that I wish to?

Amit Kumar treats every painting as a poem and feels that every painter’s painting is but a poem expressed in visual form, full of emotions. He accepts the criticism that follows his analysis of calling painting as a poem. But he accepts the criticism and respects critics’ views. He feels criticism is necessary to probe into one’s own art and re-evaluate the creations. He is much concerned with the surprises that he gives to viewers through his paintings. 
Recent work by Amit Kumar

Viewers reaction is most important as the feelings in the paintings are spontaneous and succeed in tapping and resonating people’s emotions and make a place in their heart. People feel that his work is a collage of emotion and try to relate themselves with it. But according to Amit Kumar this is pure misunderstanding of his creations and viewers are surprised to know that it’s not collage at all. This ‘surprise’ itself stimulates Amit Kumar to create more suprisal works. Viewer’s surprise is a compliment for him and he considers that surprise of viewer is his success. 

I think, it will be apt to call artist Amit Kumar ‘A treasure hunter’ with lot of surprises in his creative mind. 

- by Pankaja JK