Photographer Gurdeep Dhiman interviews people before they come in front of his camera. While black-and-white photos remain his favourite medium, the Holi in Barsana and Nandgaon, Uttar Pradesh lent themselves to some spectacular colour renditions. He believes that it takes time to connect with people before they can be photographed. And those uninhibited spontaneous emotions show in his work. Pankaj Sharma, a multidisciplinary artist, on the other hand, lets a viewer enter his vibrant canvas through minute detailing of the theme. In an artwork of a rural wedding for instance, there are men decorating a car with flowers, wedding feast spread out for the guests on leaves, a lot of dancing and movement.
Dhiman and Sharma are among the 145 exhibitors at the Annual Art Exhibition of the Chandigarh Lalit Kala Akademi (CLKA). On display are paintings, sculptures, installations, videos, photographs, and graphics presented through various mediums and forms. Among these works are award-winning entries selected by a three-member jury.
From landscapes to scenes of the city, people’s struggles, magical moments of life, feelings and emotions, the artists express it all in their own styles and materials, each work open to interpretation. For the artists, the exhibition is a platform to showcase their work and establish links with a larger audience.
It’s a journey of colours that watercolour artist and traveller Nakshdeep Singh celebrates as he captures the essence of different cities and landscapes in his paintings. Jagriti Sharma, who specialises in graphics, explores her surroundings through the media of collagraphy (a printmaking process), zinc and woodcut.
Painter Srishti Rajput uses paper as the dominant material for her art, by tearing, burning or wetting it. She shows cities on the move and the struggles of people who have to cope with its pace. Jaspal Kamana, armed with a PhD in sufism, and an interest in art photography, documents Punjabi culture. A keen observer of life, his works are a play of light and shadows, echoing his interest in Sufi literature.
Multidisciplinary artist Anmol Aulakh’s work is intended to be a seascape, but it is open to interpretation. Using mixed media of aluminum strips on a wooden frame, Aulakh highlights how the seas are hypnotic, and have a certain sense of calm, yet can be wild and vast.
Sculptor Anil Sindhu’s work Soul depicts his journey in Chandigarh, drawing attention to the fact that we often hide from the truth, and how that begets evil. Multidisciplinary artist Anshu Garg’s centres her work on the theme of inclusion and inter-connectedness. Her work Nyoks evokes a sense of nostalgia through the play of space, time, and memory.
Bipin Kaintura uses ballpoint pen on paper, where he develops meaningful symmetry between the materials and the senses, while printmaker Vinod Kumar in Crave 1 (woodcut) shows how perseverance can be key to achieving what one wants.
Shweta Kevale Naik’s sculptures combine geometrical shapes and patterns in their forms, to represent complex thoughts of the human mind. Vaibhav Passi captures the interaction and relationship between art and architecture through his photographs. His education in architecture has taught Passi to discover compositions in elements of buildings. Similarly, Priyal Arya’s mantra is to capture the essence of her subjects in a minimal way. The art of capturing architecture, its materials, light and shadows have always been the driving force behind her work.
Urbanisation and beauty of rural life have influenced painter Reena Bhatnagar, whose medium of work is acrylics. She also raises a thoughtful, symbolic concern for nature in her recent series of paintings. While Abhishek Sharma’s area of specialisation is contemporary photography and he uses 3D rendering and photography to construct hyper-real environments, as his work investigates the photographic medium as a time capturing device.
Abhishek Tiwari specialises in graphics and his Dusshera (lithograph) looks at the train tragedy in Amritsar on Dusshera, when the joy of the festival turned into a day of mourning. The work depicts how the Ravan is within us and the urge is to kill that Ravan. His work holds the mirror to humanity and its evils.
The exhibition is at Punjab Kala Bhawan, Sector 16, Chandigarh, till March 28