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Art in its myriad forms

`Drishti — A Contemporary Vision' showcases the works 24 artists from the southern States



A realistic touch... Anjani Reddy's painting

THE ART scene has changed over the years. Today, young artists are brave enough to take up art as a career, what with more galleries and exhibitions coming up and auctions thriving. The art market has allowed consultants and banks to enter the fray by advising clients on art as investment and to suggest which artist's works are worth investing in.

In this positive climate, the ICICI Bank is sponsoring the exhibition `Drishti — A Contemporary Vision' at the Lalit Kala Akademi. It showcases paintings by 24 artists from the southern States, ranging from the senior artist/art teacher Santhanaraj to the young Babu Eshwar Prasad.

The freedom to explore materials, mediums, techniques, styles and themes is exploited by these artists. Be it Adimoolam, Bhasakran, Babu Xavier, Douglas or Achuthan, each one has his individual style, making it possible to recognise the creator from the creation.

Surrealistic works

In the surrealistic works of Douglas, the crushed paper and his favourite colours of grey, ochre, black and white themselves become metaphors and heighten the sense of uneasiness. Even as one approaches the entrance of the gallery, a huge painting of his on the opposite wall makes one stop for a moment.

The surrealism of Xavier combines humour and concern, whereas that of Aziz is rather disturbing. Even the somewhat realistic works of Anjani Reddy have an underlying surrealism.

While the minimalistic drawings of birds by Premalatha Seshadri raise questions of ecological degradation, Palaiappan's works are purely based on line and recall the horror of the massacre of children in Beslan, Russia recently.

Textures and colours

Though a couple of works by Muralidharan are based on myths/fairy tales, the one without any forms other than a single triangle surrounded by floral patterns reminiscent of Mughal school, is charming. If in one work, Santhanaraj's colours and textures grab attention, in the others the total compositions do the job. Slightly different versions of the famous `marriage photographs' of Bhasakran with a touch of gold are also on display. German expressionism comes to the fore in Siddharth Ghosh's paintings of everyday themes.

The works of masters of abstraction Adimoolam and Achuthan, catch the eye; the recent creations of the latter, rather different from what has been seen in the recent years, are interesting. Thotta Tharani's easy brush work stops one on the track. Bhagwan Chavan's recent abstract work is a welcome departure from his earlier works and attracts attention.

It is difficult to discuss all the works on show, but every artist seems to have put in his best, be it Vasudev, Yusuf Arakkal, Surya Prakash, Chippa Sudhakar or Gopinath. Themes range from mythology to prehistory, contemporary life to surrealistic portrayals.

The exhibition by is on till November 4, 11 a.m.-7 p.m.

LAKSHMI VENKATRAMAN

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