Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Collective Thoughts of Memory & Experience - Venkatesh Bhadra


“A dew drop on a boat, a star in the ocean, scattered paper bits on the roof, a cat on the door…”
These lines are rich in visual images, natural, man made all sorts of forms and ideas that seem interesting. This can be the beginning of a story or a few verses from a poem. But it definitely stirs our imagination in a special way.
This is what takes place when one experiences the works of the artist Venkatesh Bhadra, whose works were exhibited at Hasta art gallery last month. In a very stylized manner his works take hold of our attention and a momentary trance is achieved where the onlooker in his own personal way absorbs the moment.

The artist highlights the fact that an art form meets its completion when it gets celebrated amongst the people, onlookers in case of painting. He also believes that the journey of painting begins with the absorption of ideas by the artist, which is later transformed unto his medium. This leads to the attainment of an expression by the artist. But the boundary of art expands beyond this. Its periphery is beyond time and space. With each onlooker the expansion of the work of art takes place. So, it begins with a very individual connotation from the artist but gradually glorifies more and more with each novel thought and perspective with which it is approached and experienced.

The assimilation of objects, of variable aspects is definitely Venkatesh’ s forte. He builds up an interesting combination of objects and natural elements that belong to diverse orientations. The images are well defined and have resemblance with the realistic and objective truths. But their significance and presence on the picture surface is completely individualistic and relates to properties of the mind as distinguished from general or universal experience.

The artist adheres to the depiction of recognizable forms, which helps the onlooker to relate to his works instantly. The colour application is rich in bold multiple strokes as well as delicate lines, specially the contours. The use of forms such as a funnel, boxes and jars, fish, rose etc. are aptly used to create a bond with the onlooker, who easily relates them to his earlier observations and experiences and then revisits them with his own personal perspective.

His compositions have been executed with a bolder approach where at times a few objects and forms seem to cover the whole picture surface. Enlarged and blown up views give the works the feel of being seen from a very close and magnified terms. Like in the painting, ‘Flower turns into stainless steel and the hand getting chlorophyll’, where the form of the hand completely dominates the surface. The painting is assimilation of two completely different things, which have been clubbed together but not with their usual and known identities.

The work titled, ‘Mystery of mysteriousness’ is a visualization which with its completely unrecognizable and unknown quality arouses a lot of curiosity .The some what geometrical forms like an oval, a cylindrical rod, and a dotted base leave a lot of room for the spectator to solve the mystery with his own decoding patterns, based on his own experiences from life.

In this lies the true ecstasy, where the spectator forgets his preoccupations and relaxes in the mystery of the forms. The artist in a very subtle and sure manner leaves the onlooker with the freedom to explore and expand the works in all possible ways. Thus opening doors to unvisited and unforeseen interpretations.

This article is contributed by Ms.Palak Dubey, Hyderabad. The views expressed in this article are the authors own. The author can be reached on dubey.palak@gmail.com

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