Monday 23 February 2015

Towards educating people to the visual language. The events and exhibits here are our small but significant attempts to do the same...Prof.Vishwanath Sabale

 Jamshetji Jijibhoy

Sir J.J. School of Art is one of the pioneering institutes of fine art education in India, since its establishment in 1878 in the current Campus, with generous donation of Jamshetji Jijibhoy, under the British administration. The School today stands in the heritage building with departments of Drawing and painting, Sculpture and modelling, Arts and crafts including Ceramics, Interior decoration, Metal work and Textile Design ; and Teachers training with Art teachers’ diploma, Art Masters and Post- diploma, Diploma in Art Education. The college has undergraduate and post graduate programs with BFA and MFA Painting (Creative painting, portraiture, print making and mural) degrees conferred to the students. The institute has seen great master artists like Pestonji Bomanji, Pithawala, M.V. Dhurandhar, Ravi Shankar Raval, Chimulkar, R.D. Dhopeshwarkar, Rasiklal Parikh, V.A. Mali as also art scholars like like J.D. Gondhlekar, P.A. Dhond, Shankar Palsikar,Madhav Satawlekar, Baburao Sadwelkar, Sambhaji Kadam, V.R. Amberkar, Vasant Parab, Shantinath Arwade. The modern masters like S.H. Raza Vasudev Gaitonde, Akbar Padamsee, Tyeb Mehta, Jeram Patel, Prabhakar Barve, Prabhakar Kolte have begun their ideas here. Even in contemporary Indian art scenario, J.J. continues to contribute with artists like Atul Dodiya, Jitish Kallat, Sunil Gawde, Krishnamachari Bose, Riyas Komu, Anant Joshi,Yashwant Deshmukh, Prajakta Potnis, Tushar Joag, Shilpa Gupta, Sharmila Samant,Valay Shende and many more.
Lighting  by Gulzar 

Sir J.J. is one of the few institutes which have the Art and crafts department along with fine arts
bestowing the fine art degree to all. The teaching is an amalgamation of academic techniques,
accommodating the contemporary changes on every period. The school today holds classes making students technically efficient and imparting the novel concepts through theory classes, beyond curriculum lectures/talks, demonstrations and workshops.This also is a unique institute which has works over 150 years of alumni and masters in its own collection. Since last couple of years we have begun an ambitious project of conserving these work sand restoring the necessary. The works thus restored will be made available to all those who wish to study/research. Our library too is open for all keen towards knowing more. Sir J.J. School has alsoopened its studios for students and artists across the world to come and work in our space. Likerecently the students from Nagpur worked in the portrait studio in order to study the nudes further,since ours is one of the few institutes which holds the nude study.  Our institute had been imparting strongly rooted technical knowledge combined with contemporary transformations in art across the world. In order to do this, we welcome artists and thinkers to come and interact with our students and faculty over the year.

We have been collaborating with FUTUR Foundation, Switzerland over five years, where the foundation selects two students from our institute for a three month residency to Switzerland. We hosted this workshop this year too, where students were exposed to the European contemporary art and a discussion about the same by Prof. Hedi KErnst. Along with art talk, the workshop also accommodated a day long experiment with raku kiln and ceramics. We had a dogra casting workshop for the students of sculpture and metal work departments conducted by Shri Suresh Waghmare. Prof. Ajit Sheel from Shantiniketan took a workshop for painting students introducing them to the new possibilities of platography technique in print making. J.Krishnamurty and his association with J.J. is well known, the J.Krishnamurty Foundation thus began a lecture series on his ideas and philosophy for our students, which were conferred by Dr.Sameer Golwelkar.To make our students observe and contemplate over art, we initiate exhibitions of practicing artists in our space. The show of internationally acclaimed artist Shri Krishna Reddy for initiated by Shri Anant Nikam, faculty of print making, supported by Sir J.J. School of Art, with the first exhibition in our college. The show further travelled to Vadodara, Bhuvaneshwar, Patna, Chennai, Pune and Nagpur.We had exhibitions by JJites, Good Homes where the works of students were exhibited along withartists, as also talk and slide shows by Krishnamachari Bose and Sunil Gawde. Portrait and landscape competitions conceived by our alumni Pradeep Raut were held in the college; portrait group initiated by Shri Vasudeo Kamat  held a portrait competition in Sir J.J.; where they arranged the demonstration of portraits by Shri Suhas Bahulkar, Shri Anil Naik and Shri Vasudeo Kamat, who painted portraits of each other along with a discussion about the art of portraiture.Artists are the reflection of society and we consider it our responsibility to embrace the social issues and envisage over them. We had a competition and exhibition Silent voices which had the paintings done by our students on the grave issue of premature female foetus killing. 
Sir J.J. School of Art, Mumbai, featuring the works of young artists from our institute between 16th Feb 2015 and 22nd Feb 2015

We also contributed in an event through our art for aid of cancer patients. We have also been consciously taking a few steps for art awareness at school level by conducting art competitions and art workshops for them. With all these activities conducted over the year, we exhibit the works of our students in the third week of February each year which showcases their efforts taken throughout. We hosted the 157th Annual Art Exhibition of Sir J.J. School of Art, Mumbai, featuring the works of young artists from our institute between 16th Feb 2015 and 22nd Feb 2015. The exhibition featured works from all our departments of sculpture, painting, arts and crafts and art teachers’ training. Along with the exhibition we had Kalamela comprising of innovative works by the students and social events like dance and music. This year we had dignitaries like Gulzar and Lalita Lajmi on the day of inauguration. Since years, J.J. has been trying to expose students to appreciate not just visual art but also the sister arts of music, drama, dance. Thus we have been consciously arranging the
Patil Rajendra and Johny ML at J J School of Art

performances of ace musicians and dancers over decades; dignitaries like Kishori Amonkar, Pt.Bhimsen Joshi have performed in our institute. Following the established tradition, this year we had Pt. Rajamiya’s recital and the well acclaimed vocalist Pt. Satyasheel Deshpande performing for the musical night and ace kathak dancer Rupali Desai accompanied by Mukand Raj Deo on Tabla. The students from textile department put up a fashion show of designs created by them with the theme Dadaism this year. Also there was an illustrated lecture by art critic Johny ML from Delhi, portrait demonstrations were also arranged.  
Kalpana Lajmi viewing movement with  Prachi Sahasrabudhe at JJ School of Art

The annual exhibition also comprises of prizes given to the proud winning students. The most
prestigious are the government prizes which were given to Swapnil Jagtap, Ciby Samuel in painting, Mayur More, Sachin Kondvaskar in sculpture, Ajay Gadaling, Aniket Satam from metal, KalashriVerma, Jidnyasa Davane from textile, Amruta Telvekar, Priyanka More from interior decoration,Motan Sankalpana, Dhammanand Patil from ceramics and Abhilesh Narnawre, Ruchita Jain and Rajesh Wankhede from MFA.Our college has been able to conserve the traditional values and yet transcend the stagnancy toembrace contemporary. Thus we have been encouraging all forms of information, academic andinvestigational for our students to contemplate. We recognize our commitment towards society and art and towards educating people to the visual language. The events and exhibits here are our small but significant attempts to do the same.

Prof.Vishwanath Sabale 
Sir JJSchool of Art Mumbai