Thursday, June 20, 2013

'Creating works that will stand the test of time...'

Riyas Komu’s oeuvre refers to the paradoxes of the urban situation that he paints with cynicism and compassion; with dejection albeit tinged with hope and sympathy.

Born in Kerala in 1971, the artist completed his BFA and MFA from Sir J. J. School of art, Mumbai. Though he has graduated with painting as his specialization, his wide range of art practice now extends itself to photography, video installations and sculpture. The artist paints images based on photographic references culled from the visual barrage of mass media, transporting them into his pictorial space of painting. When he does portraits, he actually sculpts certain ideas, as he states.

He adds, “Especially, in my sculptures, I tackle burning issues like religious fundamentalism, simmering unrest, manmade calamities like war that haunt the modern society. What though, unnerves him is the short-lived nature of public memory. The impact of any major event or act tends to evaporate. We as society tend to forget things too soon, too easily, he laments!

The common people’s concerns, worries and agonies are not drastically different. It’s just the context and they way they perceive and face them add a twist to them. It’s an art of survival, he mentions of the stoic, endless struggle to lead an unconditional life despite innumerable hurdles. His work is a tribute to the spirit of those ordinary folks with an extraordinary spirit to survive against all odds.

He is keen on creating work that will withstand the test of time; the work that will encapsulate universal, omnipresent concerns. He adds: “However, we claim to have advanced – individually and collectively, certain things will never change - the woes of the working class, famines, floods, suffering farmers and laborers – they would always be there. The poignant portraits that reflect grim realities of life seep into my consciousness and in my work.”

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