Wednesday, December 5, 2012

‘Route Maps’ at The Guild

Mumbai-based Guild Art Gallery is currently hosting  ‘Route Maps’, a solo show of works, by Sudhir Patwardhan, in which his  brush appears sometimes to move faster than the image it is meant to render, leaving a swirl or swipe of paint across the picture surface. In consequence, many of his figures now emerge at the cusp between photography and abstraction.

Ranjit Hoskote notes in an accompanying essay, “Circling between the solitude of the studio and the sociality demanded by any engagement with humankind at large; immuring himself in the archive yet also launching forward on journeys of exploration, Sudhir Patwardhan has built for himself (and  for us, his viewers) a mobile observatory of human affairs.” 
R. Siva Kumar mentions: “The artist prefers to tell his stories through images. But moving into his sixties he now knows that the desire to tell stories and to pass on one’s experience to the next generation is an innate human need rather than an individual trait. Transmitting stories is like transmitting one’s DNA; it keeps a part of us alive through a chain of memories we inscribe onto the minds of those who come after us.”

He adds, “With the mechanization of transport, travelling has also become periods of bodily inaction — the inactive body is carried through the world, and the world travels by but it is not seen. The world becomes a blur and the window becomes a mirror. The inactive traveller sinks into thought and multiplies herself internally; the window reflects her and multiplies her externally for the observant eyes of fellow travellers, sometimes clearly and sometimes as a blurred element in a madly overwritten image of the world.”

Born in 1949, Sudhir Patwardhan graduated in medicine from the Armed Forces Medical College, Pune.  He moved to Mumbai in 1973 and worked as a Radiologist in Thane from 1975 to 2005. His first one person show was held by Ebrahim Alkazi’s Art Heritage Gallery in New Delhi in 1979. His recent solo shows include ‘Family Fiction’, Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi (2011.

His selected museum shows include ‘Social Fabric’, curated by Grant Watson, INIVA, London; Lunds Konsthall, Lund, Sweden; Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai (2012); ‘Modernist Art from India’, curated by Beth Citron, Rubin Museum, New York (2011); ‘Modern Indian Art- The Ethos of Modernity’, Sichuan Museum, Shenzhen Museum, Zhejiang Museum, China (2010); ‘ReVisions, Indian Artists Engaging Tradition’, curated by Susan Bean, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Massachusetts (2009); ‘Horn Please – Narratives in Contemporary Indian Art’, curated by Bernhard Fibicher and Suman Gopinath, Kunstmuseum Bern, Switzerland (2007).

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