Come forth into the light of things....Let nature be your teacher - William Wordsworth
These words of nature poet Wordsworth come alive in painter Vazda Khan’s brushwork on canvas. Through her work, this artist from New Delhi realises how much nature has to offer. Quite happy to brand herself as a nature painter, Vazda never fails to capture the images she sees and then pours them out on the canvas as her emotions guide her completely.
Her works were recently on show at ‘A Song Unending’, an exhibition of paintings at the Odisha Modern Art Gallery here.
The large works on display were so benign and inviting that one felt drawn into its fold, surrendering to the beautiful flowers and soothing shade of trees, subconsciously expecting the crickets to chirp any moment. “Juxtaposed with the bustling city outside, I wanted people to feel that they have walked into a dream when they see these works. I wanted them to realise the joy of nature and the symbiotic relationship that living beings share with it,” says Vazda on her work.
She opted to paint nature, specifically trees that are the ultimate symbols of the ever evolving nature. The theme may be age-old, but Vazda infused a new interpretation to it with a technique quite her own. She explored use of deep textures and fluorescent colours. “For me, colour is the basis of life,” she says. With her deft lines of acrylic on canvas, the paintings transformed into pictures of serenity. In almost all her works on display, she did get detailing with use of lyrical lines.
Balance is what she strives for in her works. Through the careful selection and controlled application of the colours on her palette, she subtly played with hues in the white of the canvas. Be it the trees bathed in the orange-yellow-ochre light of dawn or the green mangrove reflected in the stagnant waters, Vazda’s hues blended in quiet harmony. It goes to show the dexterity of the painter that these exhaustive works were made to look so deceptively simple.
Also a poet, Vazda says the definition of poetry applies to all work of art. “Painting too takes it origin from emotion recollected in tranquillity and most of my works reflect this essence. My pet subjects are pleasing landscapes, flowers and trees,” she explains. And her favourite colours include Indian yellow, black, emerald green, Persian blue and cobalt blue. She uses black to show the depth of the field in the paintings.
In some paintings, she followed the mixed style of cubism and abstract art. “What is the big deal in painting a look alike? A photographer can make a better job. If your contribution has to be there, then you have to be more creative, that is why I also choose abstract art. Abstract painting is more to do with the essence of the subject. You retain it and give form to your creativity. Though leaves are generally green in colour, in my painting they are violet and red. Expertise depends on the treatment technique you adopt. From the medium to the tools that you use, everything assumes great significance. More than the subject the technique successfully employed brings laurels to any painter,” she feels.
An MA in Painting from Allahbad University, Vazda had participated in Visual Dialogue and Resonance exhibitions held this year at Noida.