The meticulous lines and textured countenance of art are proof to the painstaking process that went behind creating these emotions on canvas. One can trace influences from different artists, different times, and different cultures. But there is a common element that binds all the subjects together: the celebration of the strength of the human spirit.Known as Twinz, Thimpu-based contemporary artists Tashi Dendup and Ugyen Samdrup, are in Delhi to showcase their first-ever solo exhibition outside Bhutan. Titled ‘Invoking Entities’, the exhibition is inspired by spiritualism, teachings of Vajrayana Buddhism and Shamanism, which connects humankind to nature and all creations, say the duo.
Painfully shy and reticent, the twins are more comfortable letting their art speak for them. Press them to say something about their art, and they softly tell you: “Most of the portraits are fictional characters reflecting a combination of realism with contemporary, free style patterns rooted from graffiti, illustrations, fashion designs and traditional Japanese wood block prints.”
They acknowledge the fact that their art is inspired by
post-impressionist artist Rembrandt. So deep is their admiration for the Dutch master that they have recreated one of the most famous self-portraits of Rembrandt, albeit in traditional Bhutanese gear.
The twins also hope to showcase their work in Europe in the near future. “We believe that our art will be appreciated more in Europe. Our kind of art is more akin to the Western styles. We keep ourselves updated on the art scene in Europe,” they say.
What startles them most about their own paintings is the way people are awed and surprised with the compositions. “The moment they see it, they are like starstruck because of the bold colours. The concept is humans connecting with ancient entities, which exist beyond physical realm,” they add.The figures in all the portraits wear dresses inspired by traditional Buddhist mask dance costumes. The bright colours and bold patterns represent psychedelic experiences. In fact, among their 22 portraits to be displayed at the gallery, there is one which showcases the iconic Audrey Hepburn in traditional attire.