Curatorial Note

2nd October 2010 : Fresh Departures-9 young talents

An exhibition of works by artists  Deepak Rajbhar, Koustav Nag, Mahmud Husain, Papia Saha, Pradip Kr.Patra, Pradiptaa Chakraborty, Prakash Kishore, Rameez Waheed Bhat & Sudipta Das

Works by artists away from the dead past of modernism, are often brain teasing objects hung on the wall, mounted on the pedestals, assembled or installed sprawling on the floor. They generally sport titles confusing enough to satisfy Rolland Barthes and the viewer visually reacts, favourably or not, only after he can crack the concepts couched in them.

The nine young artists here have variously absorbed the current aesthetic, however, to create visuals on the flat surface in the tradition of painting on canvas, or three-D images yielding well to the description of sculpture. Most of the canvases are rich in painterly quality, which engage one first with colours often in vibrant scheme, lines, when used, fluent and well-honed, forms and figures freely evoked to delightful visual impact and structured sometimes with a pleasing finesse. Beneath the crisp painterly crust, however, each work has enough to intrigue the viewer, a hard core content to take him beyond a passive visual enjoyment.

Installation View Of The Show

Fresh Departures-9 young talents An exhibition of works by artists  Deepak Rajbhar, Koustav Nag, Mahmud Husain, Papia Saha, Pradip Kr.Patra, Pradiptaa Chakraborty, Prakash Kishore, Rameez Waheed Bhat & Sudipta Das

Art Work In The Show

Fresh Departures-9 young talents An exhibition of works by artists  Deepak Rajbhar, Koustav Nag, Mahmud Husain, Papia Saha, Pradip Kr.Patra, Pradiptaa Chakraborty, Prakash Kishore, Rameez Waheed Bhat & Sudipta Das There is often a hard hitting social or moral critique packed into visual metaphors. Papia Saha’s paintings of folded blankets, folds suggesting curves and crevices of the female nude, lodged in the naked upholstered sofas spell a strong feminist protest against treatment of women merely as objects of male desire. Prakash Kishore’s paintings, too, often sport forms, figures, and objects symbolizing love, desire and sensuous pleasure meticulously evoked with flair and frills. But the crawling caterpillars skillfully woven into their decorative statements deconstruct the impacts of these pleasure imagery. Critiques spiced with piquant irony and wit enliven the delightful constructs/sculptures by Pradeep Patra such as a dog with human hind legs and an auto morphed into a brightly painted chopper. The colourful canvases of Pradiptaa Chakraborty and Mahumad Husain feature humans, beasts and birds enacting fables and fairytales soaked in delectable fun and irony in a wonderland of myths and magic realism. Kaustav Nag weaves a rich tapestry of lifescape teeming with animal forms and an arabesque of their cast shadows, in which humans, beasts, and insects are interlocked in a weird amalgam. The Kashmiri artist Rameez Waheed Bhat’s acrylics have all the features of posters with anti-Indian slogans in edgy knife-like Arabic scripts in white, patterned to spell out a violent protest. Sudipta Das recycles in her canvases such kitsch as family photographs or calendar pictures of gods and goddeses with ugly pixel distortions a la those on computer or video screen to critique the state of traditional faith and values in this age of high-tech post-modernity. Deepak Rajbhar stands out from the rest as the only artist still handles images in his abstract or semi-abstract canvases with some loyalty to modernist values.

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