From mythological stories and ancient sculptures to literature, consumerism, nature and environmental issues, the paintings on display at Buddha Art Gallery, speak about umpteen subjects. But what binds the works of the eight artists is the universal element.
In most of the 15 works on display, myth is a recurring motif. In Manoj Vyloor’s ‘Shrine’ series, done in acrylic and graphic, the artist has recreated ancient Mithuna sculptures against the backdrop of molecular structures. The pieces are an amalgamation of the known and unknown worlds, one of which is awe-inspiring and embedded with layers of meaning. At one look it can be interpreted as the pitch black eye of Siva, balancing creation and destruction and at the same time it symbolises the female reproductive organ.
A P Sunil’s watercolour paintings also decodes many hidden myths and stories through the play of images. In one of the paintings, we can see a plain shirt hanging from a hanger on the washline. A crow is seen sitting on the pocket, while another painting has crows and squirrels fighting for space on the shirt. On the gap in the shirt sit a couple. The works are inspired by the famous Russian novel, ‘The Overcoat’ by Nikolai Gogol.
Shijo Jacob’s acrylic series aptly titled ‘Displaced’ shows the chaotic socio-political atmosphere against the backdrop of maps. Maps are not just the basic visual representations of places, but metaphors of political colonisation. The solid boots of a soldier standing on the red map represents the visible space between authority and the masses. In another work, a vehicle is on fire, evidently throwing light on the natives of every place who are thrown out or ‘displaced’ from their home terrain by those in power. A feminine perspective towards life is the highlight of Babitha Kadannappally’s frames. The undeniable connect between woman and nature is evident in the artist’s etchings done with aquatint. Both the red tinted flower and the holder of seeds titled ‘Move Apart’ have a clear gender identity. Remya Sandeep’s oils have nature as a motif that connects with time. Time has an omnipotent role in her works, bridging the past, present and future, especially in In ‘Time Decides the Value’ and ‘Let Me take My Own Time.’ Be it the sand particles engrained on an oyster or a coal turning into a diamond, the works signify the passing of time.
Manu Binny George focuses on way advertisements manipulate the mind and how they thrust upon people a perceived reality. The mosquitoes and the tagline, ‘Purity Guaranteed’ throws light on the contradiction between the truth and what we are forced to believe.
Antony Karal’s ‘Portrait’ series done in yellow, brown and green tints has sand dunes, pots and other things that are part of nature. Suresh Panicker’s ‘Don’t Touch My Halo’ done in dry pastel expresses the artist’s concern over the things around us which are fast vanishing.
The exhibition will be on is on at Buddha Art Gallery, Greenix Village, Fort Kochi till this month-end.