Sunday, May 5, 2013

A rebellious practitioner who fights for a cause

The ubiquitous female figure emerges as a recurring motif in Rekha Rodwittiya’s bold-hued paintings, representing diverse shades of emotions and concerns, sans objectifying the same. In fact, she has always resisted any kind of social diktats and censorship.

The celebration of womanhood has probably been the most enduring motif in her work amidst this politics of belonging that makes it stand apart. Regarding her position as a staunch feminist, the artist maintains that she has instinctively identified with those who are marginal or marginalized (by society).

One cannot and should not stay on the periphery of issues close to one’s heart, she reasons. There’s a tender touch to her narration as well. Trying to retell stories we tend to carry with us, she divulged an amalgamation of truths and desires, memories and histories - the residues of experience that define our existence in her 2006 series.

According to her, metaphors mostly culled from specific reference points, get transformed by virtue of how they’re delivered, to evoke wider meanings in the end. In terms of material, she is also keen to engage with the modern by employing the pop culture’s kitschy aesthetic. Curiously, while she affirms ‘I’m a feminist’ with palpable ease, she is equally adamant about being a practitioner sans a prefix like being a feminist artist. Rekha Rodwittiya’s oeuvre is set within the firm framework of this consistent feminist preoccupation.

A socially conscious individual that she is, as amply reflected in her gestures going beyond canvas, she has actively participated in causes like the launch of a recent charity show to support the India Foundation for the Arts (IFA) that encourages multiple means and methods of cultural enquiries. The processes of learning, both collective and personal hold value in it, a thought that she holds dear to her heart and one which drives her own personal politics as an artist, she concludes.

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