Usha Ramachandran walked gracefully around the gallery on the opening night of ‘Rhythms of Life’, shaking hands with her guests and pausing to answer any questions about her artwork. In this latest exhibit, she shares many of her bronze sculptures and sketches. “Through my works of art,” Usha says, “I love to bring before my viewers the images that have struck a chord in my mind and the beauty of very ordinary experiences which we often fail to notice in our daily lives.”
In a sculpture titled ‘Dream Catcher’, a woman is running after a butterfly, hoping to hold onto it as if it were an elusive dream. Her hair flows behind her as she reaches out to grab it, one leg stretched out in front of her, while the other sweeps up into the air showing forward momentum.
Another sculpture titled ‘Little Laundress’ shows a woman doing laundry the traditional way. Her right hand is high above her head holding a cloth that she intends to whip down onto the flat stone in front of her. She depicts the commute of a working man on a bicycle, and the joy a mother feels when she lifts a child above her head.
She truly captures the emotions inherent in the simple moments of our lives. What makes her sculptures all the more remarkable is the fact that she has no formal training. A self-taught artist, she lives and works from her home in Trivandrum, Kerala. She was introduced to sculpture by sculptor V Satheesan.
“Creating all of this art has given me such joy,” Usha says. “I hope to succeed in passing this on to my viewers.”
(Rhythms of life is on display at Lalit Kala Akademi in the National Academy of Art at 4 Greams Road till December 30)