The world is his inspiration, his paintbox is his treasure and the walls of Pune, his canvas. Nishikant Joshi says that he thrives on the emotions that everyday life presents him, which allow him to expand his imagination on canvas. At a recent exhibition at Creaticity, Yerwada, organised by Abhivyakti, a platform to make art available and accessible to people, Joshi demonstrated that painting on walls needn’t be restricted to political caricatures and social messages alone.
His street art ranges from abstract horses to realistic sadhus, some even have Hollywood characters. “I have always been inspired by nature,” he says, “Walls are the first human canvas and, in the history of human development, the first creation we did is on cave walls. Wall painting is the actual base of human creation as you express yourself on a huge surface.”
Joshi started on art early in life and travelled through murals, blogs, wall painting and intricate depictions on canvas. His gallery, Mad Works Studio, in Pune and Aurangabad, are famous for his vast array of paintings. “I believe that art is in my DNA. My father used to sketch and make sculptures in his spare time,” says Joshi.
He told people who had gathered around his works at the exhibition that wall paintings are popular in other countries, but not in India. “We must explore more possibilities of this form of art. There is a need to have people’s participation to express themselves through art.”
If you are thinking of taking up the brush yourself, Joshi says that budding artists should accept who they are without thinking about their educational degrees or getting stuck in any particular media, style or pattern. “Just express yourself with whatever you can find. An artist is never made, he is always born. Awaken that artist within you and create,” he says.