Online edition of India's National Newspaper
Monday, Sep 13, 2004

About Us
Contact Us
Metro Plus
Published on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays & Saturdays

Features: Magazine | Literary Review | Life | Metro Plus | Open Page | Education Plus | Book Review | Business | SciTech | Entertainment | Young World | Property Plus | Quest | Folio |

Metro Plus    Bangalore    Chennai    Coimbatore    Delhi    Hyderabad    Kochi    Madurai    Mangalore    Thiruvananthapuram    Vijayawada    Visakhapatnam   

Printer Friendly Page Send this Article to a Friend

Frames of fantasy

Organic forms juxtaposed with well-defined shapes, delicacy of brushwork and dense contours mark the works of Kamini Vellodi


THE YOUNG breed of British Indians have come of age in the 21st Century as third generation of South Asians who settled in Britain in the early 1960s. These youngsters find themselves in a third space — a space which is quasi-Indian and quasi-British, and the ambiguities and uncertainties they go through today have become a major problem when it comes to defining their identities. There is pressure from parents to remember their roots and simultaneously they have to inscribe themselves in the cultural and social politics of the society in which they have grown up.

This complexity and confusion can be read in the works of Kamini Vellodi, who has titled her series "Metamorphosis." Though currently pursuing her masters in painting at the Royal College of Art, London, the present show at Art World, is based on works executed during 2003.

Loss of self

According to Kamini, "There is a darker undertone to the latest work, a sense of decay and fragmentation, and also of threat. Metamorphosis involves a loss of self as another replaces one's identity, and the works seem to embody that loss." An ominous statement that deliberates on her questioning sense of identity, translated symbolically through the concept of metamorphosis. The artist's visual language and technique reinforce her ideational content.

The technique employed by Kamini is that of thin and translucent application of colours on canvas and paper in either oils or acrylics that are painstakingly worked in layers to create the effect of emerging forms as they transform and morph to settle on the surface of the paper/canvas. An automatism pervades her technique wherein the colours dribble, a process that autonomously configures images and forms that are reflective of the subconscious taking precedence over the conscious act. This practice of chance and accident gives rise to her fantasy creatures, which emerge through this act and she allows them to be, for instance the vague rabbit's head without reworking or redefining the contours.

Based on fairy tales

Her theme references Ovid's Metamorphosis, children's fairy tales and book illustrations, Chinese ink paintings and French symbolism. Since her works are premised on fairy tales, the accidental effects of spilt ink and symbolism; the character of her finished works takes on similar elements, affiliating them to the European surrealists like Max Ernest, Joan Miro and Masson. The Surrealist affinities underpin her style.

The organic forms juxtaposed with well-defined shapes, the delicacy of her brushwork contrasting with heavy and dense contours creates a sense of confusion; perhaps reflective of the artist's mind.

Her large canvases remain problematic especially in her negotiation of space, while her smaller paper works and canvases display confidence in the compositional layout, the fantasy imagery charmingly morphing and the dribble of colours contributing to the magical enchantment. Her titles underpin her problematic identity and are equally interesting such as "Where is the Honey Pot," "Pity the Dumb," "Upturned World," and "Threat."

The show will be on at Art World, 1/12, Ganeshpuram 3rd Street, Teynampet, from September 13 to 18.

ASHRAFI S. BHAGAT

Printer friendly page  
Send this article to Friends by E-Mail

Metro Plus    Bangalore    Chennai    Coimbatore    Delhi    Hyderabad    Kochi    Madurai    Mangalore    Thiruvananthapuram    Vijayawada    Visakhapatnam   

Features: Magazine | Literary Review | Life | Metro Plus | Open Page | Education Plus | Book Review | Business | SciTech | Entertainment | Young World | Property Plus | Quest | Folio |


The Hindu Group: Home | About Us | Copyright | Archives | Contacts | Subscription
Group Sites: The Hindu | Business Line | The Sportstar | Frontline | The Hindu eBooks | Home |

Comments to : thehindu@vsnl.com   Copyright 2004, The Hindu
Republication or redissemination of the contents of this screen are expressly prohibited without the written consent of The Hindu