Cloth-ed in Colours

Artist Amol Padwal uses pieces of waste cloth to create pictures to depict experiences from his life.

Written by Anjali Jhangiani | Published:October 17, 2012 3:56 am

Artist Amol Padwal uses pieces of waste cloth to create pictures to depict experiences from his life.

Standing at the threshold of his decorated home,a little boy gently pats his best friend,a bull,on its head. It was on a work-related trip to Pimpri,last year when artist Amol Padwal came across this sight,which stayed on with him and took the form of a painting. Instances like these and many more scenes from his own life are among the inspirations for his art work which will be exhibited at Malaka Spice,Koregaon Park from October 16 to 30.

Incidentally,all of Padwal’s paintings do not involve direct application of paints. The only three elements used in his artworks are canvas,cloth and glue. “I always had an inclination towards art,and that is precisely why I studied it at the Kala Mandir,in Kolhapur. After my graduation in 2004,I took some time off and went back home to my village Uple-M in Osmanabad. My grandfather and my mother run a tailoring business. One day,while I was just sitting around feeling creative,I was struck with the idea of making a collage from the wasted bits and pieces of cloth,” says Padwal

After many trial-and-error sessions of cloth-collage making,he came up with a painting that he could boast about to his friends and family. The painting showcased some kettles and a glassful of milk against a bright red background. Padwal,content with his creation,sent an application to an art competition and bagged the Dr. Bhaiyasaheb Omkar award the same year.

Speaking about the manner in which he works,Padwal says that he first makes a sketch on the canvas and then searches for the appropriately coloured bits of cloth to fill in as the element of colour in the painting. There is no paint involved in the entire process except only for the coloured dye on the cloth. “The cloth pieces are already treated with chemicals when it is dyed,if I use paint on it again,it becomes messy. So I don’t use paints at all. But instead patiently sort the pieces of cloth and use the differently coloured pieces to fill in,” informs Padwal. There are may instances where he does not find the right colour of cloth to fit into his paintins,but he sticks to his principle of using only waste cloth pieces. Padwal collects waste cloth from tailoring outlets in the vicinity of his residence in Pune at Sukh Sagar and sometimes even orders the waste cloth from his village.

Padwal,has continued to make paintings with the same technique. The painting titled ‘Nandi Bail’ showcases the friendship between a little boy and a bull,who is a symbol of peace and tranquillity. “The bull eats,sleeps and roams about like it does not have a care in the world,just like how a saint should be. This is what I miss about my childhood as well,being so serene and tension-free,” says Padwal. Another painting shows his observation during his childhood days in his village. “The people of my village treat their goats even dearer than their own children. That is the theme behind the painting with a shepherdess carrying a stick to monitor the goat that she is responsible for,” he adds.

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