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Images of diversity

The plurality of Indian life vibrates at an art show in the city



One of the exhibits at the show

AT THE upper gallery of the Apparao Galleries, the multiculturalism and plurality of Indian life vibrate on the walls in the exhibition titled "India the Image."

Presenting a collage, which includes photographs, prints, drawings and paintings, the show reflects the diversity of the country through its emblematic representation of artists from across the country. The artists represented in this show include Anindita Singh, Ashok Koshy, Charles Daybell, Chippa Sudhakar, Elanchezian, Gopal Subhedar, Pradip Dhawan, Rama Suresh, Rajeshwar Rao, Raosaheb Gurav, Sharad Pandey, Shyamal Mukherjee, V. Siva Kumar, and Swapan Kumar Pally.

Captivating

The works, which strike by their singularity, are the photographs of Koshy and Daybell from Kerala and the U.K. respectively. Koshy has captured those rare lighter moments in the `Times of Corridor' of the groups of danseuses thoroughly relaxed caught in the light hearted chatter, yet in their complete dance attire to take the stage. Daybell's Mughal lacy marble screen creating a drama with light filtering through is captivating.

Chippa's etchings encapsulate the Indian life in the sartorial attire of his figures in the work titled "He and She". Dhawan evokes the magical world of miniatures through his peacock and the densely delineated foliage. His format is innovative with a cut out face placed in the centre against the chequered background resembling a chessboard or snakes and ladder pattern. Rao's technique is interesting, exploiting the superimposition of coloured crayons and then scratching away the surface to create his imagery at will, which allows the colours to shine through in layers.

Skilful delineation

Elanchezian's mastery of his painterly skill emerges in his delineation of jewels on the old woman, and the decoration adorning the bulls particularly in the villages during festivals is ethnic, a ubiquity in the South. Siva Kumar gives us the images of nude children in the street with fascination writ large on their faces as they pose to be captured with the brush of the camera. Rama Suresh attracts by his bold brick-like strokes fluently applied to recreate the image of a bright sunny morning in the desert region of Rajasthan with two ethnic figures looking out towards the horizon.

These three local artists, in their works, reveal a technical virtuosity bordering on neorealism, and they rustle in a freshness mediated with their simplicity, naivety, spontaneity and easy charm of their subjects. The hype created in the maddening world of growing technology for resourcefully employing it, these simple charming works allows a quality of restfulness bordering on serenity.

The exhibition is on view at Apparao Galleries, Wallace Garden, Nungambakkam, till January 13.

ASHRAFI S. BHAGAT

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