Monday 2 April 2018


Maharashtra Cultural Centre
Sudarshan Hall Near Ahilyadevi Girls High School Above bank of Maharashtra Shaniwar Peth Branch 421/ 422 Shaniwar Peth, 
Pune-411030, Maharashtra, India

Virago ... solo show by Pradnya Khandgaonkar


वह तीर थी,
तलवार थी,
भालों और तोपों का वार थी,
फुफकार थी,
हुंकार थी,
शत्रु का संहार थी..
- Tribute to Rani Durgawati

Pradnya’s works are addressing the strength of women: man-like, a female warrior. ‘Heroine’ is the English word for Hindi वीरांगना (vīrāṅganā) or rather, a ‘Virago’. However, with time the meaning of Virago shifted towards negativity as fighting battles, wearing men's clothing, or receiving the tonsure was not considered as women’s prerogative. So, virago is used disparagingly, to imply that a woman was not as excellent or heroic, but was instead violating cultural norms.

खूब लड़ी मर्दानी, वह तो झाँसी वाली रानी थी

(Queen of Jhansi fought like Virago)

Yet, we appreciate Queen of Jhansi Rani Laxmibai, Gondwana Queen Durgavati, AwadhBegamHazarat Mahal, SavitribaiPhule, Sarojini Naidu, Indira Gandhi and so many.

Pradnya Khandgaonkar

It is surprising that Pradnya asked me to write for her catalogue. As a man, I find it challenging to think like a woman as her works provoke layered feminine angst. Although, by nature, men are masculine and has physical strength, with technical advancement it is the intellect that is considered real strength. In spite of it, there are millions of women abused by men who are still influenced with their false ego. It is in the hope of humanity that these tortured women survive and very often emerge stronger than men. As Pradnya says, “I feel women have strong personalities and should be portrayed as a blend of power and care.” The sheer ability to care for others is the source of power and greatness that needs to be recognised and depicted.

recent work by  Pradnya Khandgaonkar
In Pradnya’s paintings, the women sometimes wear naqaab, army uniform or they are nude, holding symbolic routine issues like abuse, fear, war, peace, erotism, love and our planet. The violence and abuse has a subtle and restrained quality in her works. Her rendering has a very delicate and detailed quality that evokes a quizzical experience in the viewer’s mind. The visuals are calm and meditative without direct propaganda but keeping the silent boldness of the rebelliousness towards the social oppression. It is obvious from the works that the artist looks at the subjects’ contexts analytically and turns to swim out of the vortex. Her ‘women’ give an unshakeable positive motivation to aspire and admire.

Rajesh Pullarwar
Artist / Curator

Saturday 31 March 2018

My name is Ujjayani Nandi, Print maker as live on plant Earth

“I want to do so many things, and I know that I can but the only thing which I need is little bit support”. This is not only my verdict or thoughts but I think every woman have it in herself.
Ujjayani Nandi 

                   I Ujjayani Nandi artist from the North Eastern part of India, form a very last time try to present inner puzzle or hidden desires of a Woman. I completed my graduation and Masters from IKSVV Khairagarh. I believe in changes and for this I believe to break stereotypes and for it I consider my art as a most powerful medium.

          Being a lady with bold character… no doubt, I always make my way from no way, and try to express the suppressed feeling of women through my art work. Being an artist I always try to send progressive messages to the society so we can make a better world for everyone. I believe in freedom and of course women freedom, which is our dominant desire for a better world.

          Nature is a dominant think which attract my art forms, just imagine if it may possible that tree, birds, animals can express their feelings or the things which going with them then I truly think that it must be look like my work, which have all that natural form and textures. I draw what I feel. I always try to create those feelings which come out from the incidence which happen to me or a woman nearby to me. My issues are very minor, mostly not noticed by many people, for ex I grew up in my family with my younger brother in same love and care but still at certain point we experience the difference of low and high among us. Surely we didn’t face gender discrimination in an educated family like us, but still I feel it any how in many places, though I have equal rights as my brother.

I try to imply this view through my work, I am sure that it is not my pain but yes it is the bitter truth which I feel at many aspects of my life.

          “A lady is a perfect Home maker” actually this is the basic ideology of our society and somehow I also agree with it. A lady is actually a home maker doesn’t matter that she is a working woman or a house wife, she always have a responsibility of making, she was treated as a leader of this task but still she didn’t enjoyed the freedom of taking open decision in the making of her own vision. This thought always fascinated me and of course I feel it too many times which come as an imagination in my prints.

          Yes I can say, that my prints speak women’s emotions, my emotions and yes I just love to do it, because it gives a relief to my thunder  through which I can assure myself that, yes I express what I feel. It gives me such a strong feeling of expression which actually oxidized my nature of freedom.

by Pooja Upadhyay

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