Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Tracing the fast-changing face of Indian art

A new insightful volume about major artists of this generation who has taken Indian art to new heights begins with an introductory essay, entitled ‘New persuasions in contemporary Indian Art’ by Gayatri Sinha. The titles of the essays incorporated in the book are self explanatory.

‘Baiju Parthan: Prophesies in Pixels and Paint’; ‘Jayashree Chakraborty: Landscape in time and space’; ‘Surendran Nair: Openness of secrecy’; ‘Pushpamala N.: Self in stills, conflict within the frame’; ‘N.N. Rimzon: The metaphor of irony’; ‘Anita Dube: A lover’s discourse’; ‘Nataraj Sharma: simulated realities & virtual experience’; ‘Atul Dodiya: between the baroque & the minimal’; and ‘Sudarshan Shetty: transforming contemporary sculpture’.

Other artists in spotlight are ‘Bose Krishnamachari: History, memory & postmodern Pastiche’; ‘Anju Dodiya: Beauty’s dark underside’; ‘Subodh Gupta: Object world’; ‘Shibu Natesan: reading the contemporary moment’; ‘TV Santhosh: Between the Satanic Verses and the axis of evil’; and ‘NS Harsha: Making of Good things’ inform us about the crux of their practice.

‘Bharti Kher: of Monsters, misfits…’; ‘Jagannath Panda: Negotiating shifting ground’; 'Riyas Komu: the seekers mind conversation’; ‘Jitish Kallat: Guilt gilded in gold’; ‘Shilpa Gupta: Tracing figures of absence’ are among the other essays. Each of them is accompanied by succinct artists’ conversations with Parul Dave Mukherji, Deepali Dewan, Grant Watson, Arshiya Lokhandwala, Vyjayanthi Rao, Deeksha Nath, Sharmini Pereira, Brinda Kumar, Latika Gupta, Sasha Altaf, Shaheen Merali, Ullekh N.P., Nancy Adjania, and Ranjit Hoskote, among others.

This thoroughly researched document puts the spotlight firmly on the best artistic talent from the country and their outstanding work that addresses a range of issues like the expanding city, religion and mythology in the context of modern urbanizing India, war and violence. With a touch of humor and irony, depth and insight, they deal with some of the complex aspects of our social polity through multiple devices.

‘Voices of Change’, in a way, acquaints us with the changing face of Indian art by encapsulating the practices, themes and thoughts of some of the top contemporary artists from the country.

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