Monday, May 6, 2013

A publication that encapsulates T. V. Santhosh’s recent practice

A document, entitled ‘Blood and Spit’ by The Guild and Jack Shainman Gallery (148 pages with over 85 color plates) includes essays by Shaheen Merali, Brigitte Ulmer, Alexander Keefe and Santhosh S. encapsulates T. V. Santhosh’s practice. The volume covers the artist’s works from 2007 to 2009, encompassing works from four of his solos – Blood and Spit, Living with a Wound, A Room to Pray and Countdown.

His exploration demonstrates a reality on the verge of explosion as if time had been stopped. Simultaneously, the work is profoundly human and cerebral. Although the paintings are extremely current, they have become universal as we live with an over saturation of imagery and rapid exchanges of ideas. People of all contexts and backgrounds can relate to their pictorial approach.

T.V. Santhosh’s works have been exhibited at many international art galleries and museums. Some of his prominent museum shows are Dark Materials curated by David Thorp, India Xianzai, MOCA, Shanghai, China, Passage to India, Part II: New Indian Art from the Frank Cohen Collection, at Initial Access, Wolverhampton, UK and Continuity and Transformation, Museum show, by Provincia di Milano Italy.

While his work is conceptually based, Santhosh’s use of deeply saturated color and fluid edges bring the viewer to an elevated state of mind and adds an unnerving quality to the paintings. The tightness of the frame and forcibly close vantage point harkens back to the film noir genre bringing the viewer to a reflective state. His images depict chaos and paranoia relating to current media coverage of contemporary events.

His sharply focused images and art practice are adept ‘borrowings’ from today’s electronic and print media and at times, the paintings of western masters. He initiates a dialogue between known historical images and their contemporary correlates by deftly effecting a curious cinematic blending of fact and fiction. For instance, his series of works at Nature Morte in 2011 in collaboration with The Guild was an intense outcome of preoccupation with the of war images – its on-going and changing nature, memory and perception. These are powerful works that set us thinking about the global scenario and our perception of it.

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