LIFE, IN its varied hues, forms, shapes, facets finds expression in ‘Shades of Life’, a group show of 12 artists, who bring on their canvas many moods, realistic and abstract expressions, metascapes with vast spaces, nature in all its resplendent glory and colour, in mediums as varied as water, acrylic, enamel, oil on canvas.
The paintings pulsate with life, as the artists give wings to their imagination and express their inner expressions, be it memories from childhood, beauty of rural or tribal areas, journeys, both internal and external, architecture, environment, nature, folk art, unexplored terrains.
Both professional and amateur artists from various parts of India, including Punjab, UP, Chandigarh and Karnataka, are part of Shades of Life. According to painters and curators of the show, Jyoti Jain Khemka and Anju Bala, the aim of the exhibition is to showcase the inner expressions of artists from varied backgrounds in the aesthetic setting of the Visual Arts Museum, Panjab University, Chandigarh.
Sagar Gore is enchanted with children, capturing their moods in different environments, with the artist keenly observing their innocence, liveliness, wonderment and translating it all onto the canvas, in oil, acrylic and water colours. The subjects of Umesh Bhoi are derived from the tribal environment, with the mud houses, foliage and even human beings bearing a persona of melancholy and the colour scheme earthy and muted, with nostalgia the essence of the work.
For Jyoti Jain Khemka, art is a process of creative immersion or a never-ending journey to explore one’s own beingness. Painting for her is like wandering into a forest and experiencing things beyond their form, shape, context, medium and style.
“For me, art is an exploration and I enjoy it completely but not out of any intellectual borrowings. I love working with found objects, with two of my abstract works here using pieces of a broken shed, wires, broken glass, plastic paint et al. I believe simplicity and accessibility is the hallmark of art,” says Khemka, pointing to a work which has been inspired by the rain she viewed from her window, and another which depicts the shift of day and night. A former student of history of art, Khemka’s works belong to the crossroad of abstraction and representation and for her the process of art is the real fruit, not the end product.
Exploration of faith is the aim of Anju Bala’s paintings, her sense of wonderment about God’s creations evident in her works. Her human figures are depicted as repetitive design patterns and look elongated, as if stretching their being with full faith intensity and urgency.
Hyper-realism is the genre Solani Agarwal works in. Meticulous detailing is the defining quality of her exquisite works.
Her paintings confront the viewer with the illusion of manipulated photographs, though they are much more elaborate. Ritesh Bhoi visualises his childhood through his paintings and it was his dream to have several toys, especially vintage cars, which invariably become the subject of his works.
Chhavi Rajpal’s works are pure painted passion, with the subjects being flowers and the things around her.
“Colours are the subject, medium and final product to me and the act of painting is like therapy for my soul,” says the artist.
Aditya Puthur, through his works, attempts to conjunct art and science for a new set of understanding and consolation, as Kishore uses architectural designs in his works, and engages with light and space rather than portray mood. Jashandeep paints the sublime experience of the nature in all its nuances, biological organisms, foliage, light and more. Her subjects are trees, flowers and generally birds that symbolise freedom for her. Jashandeep paints the sublime experience of the nature in all its nuances, her subjects being trees, flowers and birds. Karuna Vashisth’s subjects are derived from the daily life of villagers, with folk art the inspiration. Along with nature, long and expansive pathways like metascapes in muted colours are the subject of Pravin’s works, with surrounding visual experiences the inspirations. The exhibition is on till November 17 at Visual Arts Museum, Panjab University, Chandigarh.