London: Galleryske in Bangalore is currently hosting “Subodh Gupta: Recent Works”. This is the artist’s first solo exhibition of small works. “I’m quite excited about it. The poetry of doing something so small, personal and valuable to me; it’s quite a beautiful experience,” says Gupta.
“The paintings in this show are essentially a sort of diary for me. I have had the opportunity to travel to many parts of the world, and eat all kinds of local cuisine- it’s interesting that sometimes a restaurant in Italy will be identical to something you have probably visited in Delhi. I record my journey through the food, creating a visual archive. It is a way to map my outward movement from India to the rest of the world. As the title “Note to self”, suggests, the paintings are markers of meals had and shared, they are autobiographical in a sense”, explained Gupta.
“Narration comes to me naturally, I have been fond of telling stories since my childhood.”
London: In the early hours of Monday morning, Badri Narayan passed away in a hospital in Bangalore at the age of 84.
Narayan had a successful career not only as an artist and illustrator but also as an art teacher.
The artist is mostly known for his narrative and symbolic paintings. He drew heavily from Indian mythology and metaphors and acknowledged the influence of the Indian miniature tradition in his works. The artist believed in the two-dimensionality of painting, and preferred to work in a smaller format; one that he found practical and well suited for the watercolours that have been his preferred medium for several years. Narayan had also worked with etchings, woodcuts and ceramics and illustrated some children’s books.
Narayan exhibited his works for the first time at the Hyderabad Art Society in 1954 and since then he had more than 50 solo shows.
Emily Jane Cushing shares a note on a talk given by Wynyard Wilkinson at Saffronart in London
Wynyard Wilkinson introducing the evenings event.
London: On Wednesday 15 May, before the preview of the new Saffronart exhibition ‘Silver From the Indian Sub-Continent 1858-1947’ author and Antique silver specialist Wynyard Wilkinson held an informative discussion on the decorative nature of the silver articles on display.
Despite the many aspects of silver production during the colonial period in India, given the diverse nature of decorative designs varying from region to region, Wilkinson touched on all the key styles. He noted the aesthetic features and purposes of various pieces, and underlined the relationships between geographical areas and designs, also noting that various regional designs often inter-link.
First, Madras “Swami Ware” was taken in to account. Wilkinson noted that despite the fact that ‘swami’ designs exhibited fine and intricately detailed ornamentation of Hindu deities and mythological figures, the style was a huge success in Europe and Great Britain. The most frequently depicted deities in this genre are Vishnu and Brahma riding their vahanas, or associated animals.
After the Madras region, the discussion turned to Cutch silver, known for its attractive patterns of scrolling foliage intertwined with animals, birds and hunting scenes. The Cutch style was the most venerated Indian silverware in the late 19th century. Wilkinson particularly noted the resemblances to 17th century Portuguese pottery decorations, and distinctive similarities in the depiction of animal and bird figures with Persian decoration.
Next, Wilkinson focused on Kashmiri silver, highlighting the shawl pattern in particular. Taking inspiration from the prevalent Kashmiri weaving industry, this pattern illustrates vines of blossoms and leaves amid and between flowing scrolls; these scrolls sometimes lack detailing as to accentuate the distinction between the floral and the scroll aspects of the pattern.
Wilkinson then moved on to silverware produced in Lucknow. Designs from this region are most commonly recognized for their use of two patterns, the ‘jungle’ and the ‘hunting’ pattern. These patterns feature, although not to scale, forests of palm trees containing both animal and male figures, and bold male figures on elephant back pursuing wild animals or competing in sporting activities.
The eclectic diversity of the silversmithing in Bombay, as a result of immigrant artisans from many regions of India who brought with them a wide range of design and decorative influences, was also discussed. Wilkinson noted, when discussing specific pieces, the use of domestic picture design by Bombay artisans, as a conscious move away from Cutch style foliage designs.
To conclude his informative talk, Wynyard Wilkinson drew the audience’s attention to two unique oversize examples of Indian colonial silverware on display. First, a large hand-rinsing fountain produced in Cutch in 1910, and, second, a voluminous two-handled vase crafted in Madras in 1890.
Tarika Agarwal of Saffronart on an exhibition in Bangalore that documents trends in Indian printmaking over the last 100 years
Bangalore: The National Gallery of Modern Art, Bangalore, has organized a month-long exhibition on Indian printmaking in the city. The exhibition opened on April 28, 2013, and will continue till the end of May.
The exhibition is titled ‘Between the Lines’, and has been curated by Lina Vincent Sunish, an art historian from Bangalore. The exhibition is mainly based on Indian prints from the private collection of Waswo X. Waswo that document the trends in Indian printmaking over the last 100 years. Waswo is an artist hailing from Wisconsin, USA, who now lives in India, and has a special interest in Indian printmakers and their work.
The opportunity to view works from a private collection is bound to raise interest within art circles. Art collectors are the ones who ultimately drive the market as well as dictate future trends. When an public institution as important as the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) decides to go ahead with an exhibition displaying a private collection of Indian prints, be assured that it will be a comprehensive show as well as a learning experience.
The exhibition tells the complete story of Indian printmaking through a variety of printing techniques on display, including etchings, lithographs, woodcuts and serigraphs. Programs have been designed to help the general public as well as artists and students understand Indian history through these prints. What makes the show a ‘must-visit’ is the timeline of the collection. While some of the prints date back to 1917, the more contemporary prints count some as recent as 2012. There are about 152 works by 79 artists displayed from the collection.