TANJORE PAINTING has never had it so good. Many wannabe artists are now choosing this medium to express their creativity.
M. Muthukrishnan is no different. An exhibition of some of his works is on at the Centenary Exhibition Hall, Government Museum, Egmore. Also on display are chalk carvings done by another museum employee, D. Asokan.
Employed as a photographer with the Government Museum, Muthukrishnan has also tried his hand at tempera colours. Several paintings inspired by daily chores of women dominate the walls offering morning prayers, making coffee, combing hair, applying henna, feeding a child and making handicrafts. To lend a mural effect to some works, the artist has daubed muted shades of brown in the edges. The knife strokes for `Fisherwoman' give the surface a rugged finish.
Pics. by S. Thanthoni
As for the Tanjore paintings, the themes are traditional Navanita Krishna, Venkateswara, Coronation of Rama and Ganesha. The gold foil used in the large format works has a `glitzy' impact. The art works are just right for puja rooms.
As for Asokan's chalk carvings, they are innovative and painstaking. The technical assistant at the Coimbatore Museum was looking for a challenge and so zeroed in on chalks as a medium of expression. He has been working with medium for over three years now.
The minute details in `Elephant pulling a log,' `Pillar with Ornamentation' and `Mahabalipuram Temple' leave one awestruck. The artist has tried to make social statements with `Pressure of the Syllabus' where a boy is seen buckling under the burden of books, and `Evils of Dowry' for which the artist has shaded the chalk orange to carve the image of a burning bride.
But the pick of the collection is `Pearl in oyster' which actually opens and closes, like the real one. Another piece worth mention is `Chain'. That each piece has been carved out of a single chalk is what makes Asokan's effort laudable.
The exhibition is on till March 14, 10 a.m. to 4.30 p.m.
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