Thursday, August 22, 2013

Arijoy Bhattacharya’s intriguing oeuvre

Arijoy Bhattacharya, a young and talented artist based in the capital city of India, is counted among the most promising practitioners of his generation. He obtained his BFA (painting) from College of Art, New Delhi in 2009.

The artist has worked on a series of exquisite drawings and sound, which are based on ancient iconography and scientific templates. Sri yantra, Nataraja and Shivlinga are the motifs that recur in his artworks with a some influence of the Bengal school.More recently, he chose to embark on a visual sojourn involving a painted works that strive to seamlessly blend the oriental and the occidental through juxtaposition of symbols of unity with drawings wherein the line turns into a thread of information that traverses various fields of information.

Taking a cue from a wide range of influences such as post-modern philosophy and Indian metaphysical traditions, Bhattacharya’s works explore reciprocity and mimesis. An essay mentions of Bhairava (male) looks toward Bhairavi (female), as they sit together in a state of yogic repose, on a Lotus. The captivating configuration of the figures follows the Uma-Mahesvara prototype.

It adds, “This image has been developed from a Nepalese source centering in the worship of the Goddess Kubjika. It’s an exploration and reinvention of a rare icon that indicates the hybridization of Indian Shaiva and Tibetan Buddhist imagery. The traditional Jwala Mala Mandala (Pattern of the Necklace of the Cosmic Fire) has been replaced by Sea-horse valley formations of the Mandelbrot Fractal. Fractals are iterated equations that generate patterns in the digital realm. One of them has been dubbed as the thumbprint of God - an existent representation of infinity. This pattern pervades throughout nature. It’s curiously consistent in satisfying the parameters to represent the fire of the Cosmos, at the levels of both form and content.”

Giving an insight into his philosophy and processes, he has noted that creating images through the collage technique lets the juxtaposition of disparate elements, getting unified in a composition, somewhat akin to music. ‘Lotus-Lovers’ and ‘Strange Attractors’ constitute a suite of drawings, which present a case of counterpoint, in terms of lines through its two types, the architectonic and the organic, converging and diverging within the themes presented.

He has featured in a number of significant shows like ‘Narrative’, Gasp, Boston (2010); ‘Holy Now’, Religare Arts, London (both in 2010); ‘Rising Stars’, Nitanjali Art, BMW studio, Delhi; ‘Harvest’, Arushi Arts, Gallery Stainless, Delhi (2009); ‘Round and Round’, Polka Art, IHC, Delhi; ‘Vistaar’, Gallery Limited Editions, Kolkata (both in 2007).

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