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Tuesday, Oct 26, 2021
Outlook.com

Sight And Vision

A fascinating journey into the mindscapes of five premier artists

Sight And Vision
Sight And Vision
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
POST Independence, the politics, the ideology, the bio-sociative aspects of contemporary Indian art have been the subject of much anguished debate and dreary documentation. While much ink has been expended on recording the history of art 'movements', scant attention has been paid to the processes of the artistic mind: that crucible of the imagination where the images that are the very stuff of all art and art histories are first formed. In which sense art historian Geeti Sen scores a first with Image and Imagination: a fascinating jargon-free journey into the mindscapes of five premier Indian artists. In the course of which the reader is invited to be the privileged witness to their creative process, to that acute moment of encounter when the known meets the unknown, the familiar meets the forbidden, when all that is remembered and forgotten surfaces, crystallises in that one abiding image that we call "art".

Sen's choice of artists may at first seem arbitrary. What could painter Ganesh Pyne's dark, brooding, cerebral, luminous otherworlds have in common with Manjit Bawa's peopled by creatures exuding an almost vulgar vivacity? Where do sculptor Meera Mukherji's Muria and Maria icon inspired creations mesh with the mythic creatures that inhabit the dream-worlds of painters Jogen Chowdhury and Arpita Singh? Yet there is common ground here. Each of them has consciously or otherwise drawn from their Indian resource for creative sustenance and expression: Mukherji from Bastar sculpture, Chow-dhury, Singh from Kalighat pat and kantha textiles respectively, Bawa from Indian miniature painting. Pyne admits to his artistic sensibility being subliminally defined by the mangala and charya padas, the tales of Sri Chaitanya he heard as a child. And each artist, with the exception of Pyne, has lived and worked abroad, drunk from diverse streams before turning...

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