Art News & Views


November – December, 2011

Paintings by Rajendra Dhawan
Gallery Threshold, New Delhi 
October 13 to November 30, 2011

Rajendra Dhawan's style of work is very subtle and minimal. They are visual experiences and to absorb the reality buried under his strokes one must patiently look at the paintings first, and then gradually develop a connection. Both observer and observed resonate with a sense of shared quietude and stillness.

Born in 1936 in Delhi, he studied at the Delhi School of Art. He later went to Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris in 1953-1958 and to Belgrade Institute of Art in the year 1960- 62. Rajendra Dhawan taught painting in India until 1962 and later received a grant to travel to Yugoslavia in 1964- 1966. He is the founder of The Unknown group which exhibited in 1964.

Dhawan has numerous solo exhibitions to his credit. Selected solo shows include various  galleries of Mumbai,  New Delhi, New York, France. The artist has been living and working in Paris since 1970.


Prana- The Life Within
Galerie Kashya Hildebrand, Zurich
October 20 to December 3, 2011

Prana- The Life Within by Nobina Gupta, expressesed her affinity to abstract construct of emotion, as well as to contemporary visual culture.

The natural energy of the universe, the 'Prana' or 'Chi', the channelised flow of lexistance, and sap of growth within the vast expanse of organic world has always been Nobina Gupta's primary inspiration. The result of ignoring sustainability, and increase in pollution and exploitation of natural resources, causes effects like environmental degradation and global warming. These are posing questions about the discourses of development. Her works give the message that this is the time of awareness ,that there is still time, to re-forge the missing link that completes the full circle of life.

She was also the participating artist of Gennext 1 in October 2006 organized  by Aakriti Art Gallery.


Head Space
Thomas Erben Gallery,New York
October 27 to December  3, 2011

Thomas Erben Gallery, New York started  Yamini Nayar's exhibition from October 27. This was Yamini Nayar's first solo exhibition with the gallery, following the two-person show Arrested Views (with Sheela Gowda) in 2009.

In this new body of work, Nayar enabled us  through an increase in scale - to view her photographs, documents of temporarily fashioned tabletop sculptures and environments. A slow-down of the photographic moment is produced through the entirely hand-made nature of her assemblages, which goes through a process of continuous reworking. The textures of often discarded materials (plaster, Styrofoam, plastics, fabric, etc.) were complemented with the flattening qualities of photography resulting in works that are structured, yet highly visceral. In her constructions, Nayar often uses historical imagery as a point of departure and employs familiar perspectives  to engage levels of recognition, while simultaneously suspending the narrative and defying rules of perspective. These tensions, combined with her artistic  sense of colour and use of light, creating an open-ended quality.


The Flaneuristic Gaze
1x1 Al Quoz Gallery, Dubai
October 29 to November 30, 2011

1x1 Al Quoz Gallery in Dubai presented Rameshwar Broota's powerful images which opened up new spaces for imagination. His works speaks about the body ,the pre-existing environment through visual language the possibility for multiple meanings of the signs mobilized in Broota's work are possible because of the way he manages to disrupt our familiar optics, by switching the background or the frame that makes us look again , and think again about what we are seeing.In doing so he opens up the possibilities for re-vision,for re-thinking, re-seeing and re-knowing ourselves and our world.

The diverse body of work is unified by a practice that utilizes short lived juxtapositions of the natural, organic and bodily to the constructed, inorganic and mechanistic. This unification is constructed to rupture these very binaries. This is precisely the set of shifting binaries that gives voice to the polyphonic visual discourse that characterizes Broota's practice across genre and subject matter. In some works, the body is iconically treated as terrain, while in others the terrain, or landscape is animated by the cosmopolitan, urbane gaze of the well travelled flaneur , who becomes a part of the very landscape that his gaze constructs. In some works, photographic interventions, recast the body, as a part of a larger mechanism or machine, in others the possibilities of the self, seem to be both framed and delimited by geometric space.


Scaffolding the Absent
The Guild gallery, Mumbai
November 4 to November 22, 2011

The Guild gallery, Mumbai, presents exhibition Scaffolding the Absent, featuring G.R. Iranna's most recent body of paintings.

In this powerful collection of five new large-scale works, G.R. Iranna meditates on the fragility of our existence. He uses  Buddhist iconography as an expression for larger questions, he employs his characteristic visual language in “scaffolding the absent” elements present in our search for self-knowledge  against the backdrop of its incompleteness in our mortal life.He portrays a temporary structural outline of that which is invisible within the frame, but contextually present in its visible absence. Through his visual interventions, Iranna shows how we fail to articulate a language to explain our purpose in the collective solitude of human beings.


Places of Rebirth
Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai
November  5 to November 22, 2011

Artist Navin Rawanchaikul  will present  Places of Rebirth, curated by Steven Pettifor.

Building upon the 2008 exhibition, Navinland Cinema, the Thai artist of Hindu-Punjabi descent returns to India on an journey that retraces ancestral memory and the Diaspora that took his family from India and Pakistan to Thailand. Geographically split between his hometown of Chiang Mai in Thailand's north, and his adoptive home of Fukuoka, Japan, much of  Navin Rawanchaikul's recent creative output attempts a resolution of duality and dislocation.

Since the early 1990s, the 40-year-old artist has become renowned for creating an animated and accessible brand of situational art, which incorporates an entertaining theatre of media, methods, and collaborative characters. Creating elaborate egocentric narratives that blur fact and fantasy, his artistic approach involves direct interventions, social commentary, and an innovative style of integrating community or individual experiences.

In 2010, Rawanchaikul was awarded the national Silapathorn citation from the Thai Ministry of Culture in the respected field of Visual Arts.The artist divides his time between his family in Fukuoka, Japan, and his hometown of Chiang Mai where Navin Production is based.

He incorporates expansive movie billboard style paintings, sculpture, diarist prose, poetic video and sound installation. The exhibition also features participatory engagement for visitors to recant their own place of rebirth. Exploring aspects of community from a geo-cultural perspective, Places of Rebirth is loaded with implications to resettlement, immersion and acceptance.


Three Artist Group Show
Gallery Espace, New Delhi
November 5 to November 26, 2011

Gallery Espace will exhibit a group show of abstract art by Mumbai based artists Manish Nai, Sheetal Gattani and Yashwant Deshmukh.

Manish Nai's, innovation comprises of large-format diptychs; collage works on jute and canvas.  His colour is restricted to earth tones. He pastes thick jute on canvas base, sticks a sheet of butter paper over it, and then applies washes of transparent colour on this surface, and fine-grained jute over it. They appear to be a combination of light and dark colour shades but a closer look reveals the intricacy of patterns. The artist not concerned with the single image but the processes.

Sheetal Gattani is a pure abstractionist. Beginning with a simple piece of black paper, she instinctively chooses her colours and hues, which in some places erupt on the surface and cause the paintings to resemble flaking, damp walls. Her earthy, roughly textured paintings, with their highly reduced visual vocabulary, are built with several layers of watercolours. Yashwant Deshmukh, mostly works in acrylic on canvas. He inserts objects of daily use such as a bucket or a funnel on his surfaces which are individual protagonists to be viewed strictly in relation with the space in which they levitate. By employing these objects he investigates the metaphysics of space and form. He employs a visual language that evinces a conscious thought that go beyond surfacial representation of the obvious.


World Within Worlds
Bajaj Art Gallery, Mumbai
November 7 to November 12, 2011

The Mumbai Art Kollective will present an exhibition themed around the concept, Worlds Within Worlds, at the Bajaj Art Gallery, Mumbai. One world  we say, but within this there exist so many worlds. Distinct, self sufficient and presumably isolated and unaffected by what goes on in the other worlds. A myriad microcosm  independent, self-sustaining. Till such time that the worlds overlap, collide and impinge on each other. The participating artists are Anjali Purohit and Prakash Bal Joshi specifically chosen for this show to work around this theme together in order to explore how two very distinct styles of work can express the same idea in their individualistic way and yet synergize in one space to create, perhaps, a richer understanding of the theme. While Prakash works in the pure abstract realm of the passion and interplay of line and colour, Anjali offers a layered style of realism where the obvious figurativeness slowly reveals shades of meaning, nuances, atmosphere and suggestion that go far beyond the obvious. The many worlds in which each of us inhabit are mainly professional, personal, cultural and social. Our private world where live our hopes, dreams, fears and passions that often govern what communal world we choose to belong to. The deep world of our subconscious or even deeper, the unconscious that perhaps influence our hopes, fears and desires.

Worlds Within Worlds is an exhibition that presents personal and myriad means of perception and reactions to this particular theme. The gallery has encouraged loose and wide elucidations of this thought and put them together in the show to see if the juxtaposition of the various portrayals lead us to interesting and novel tangents on the theme.


This End to the Others
Aakriti Art Gallery, Kolkata
November 7 to November 30, 2011

Aakriti Art Gallery and Vadehra Art Gallery presents an exhibition of photographs by  Rameshwar Broota at Aakriti Art Gallery.

Rameshwar Broota's recent photographs reflect both a contemporary emphasis on the interiority of vision and translate the personal relationship between the photographer and subject in ways that appearing to be spontaneous and but are shaped with extraordinary care. His flawless capture of the corporal world has his eye and hand constantly cross-checking each other over textural and tactile conclusions. While there are claims that photography is to witness and record, Broota explores the transcendental possibilities present within the visual.Thus working with the awareness that the media of  photograph is both frozen in time, for the time.

The artist has worked on the basics of photography in his recent exhibits, emulating the etiquette of the dark room and making such interventions that creates shadows among disparate images. Torn between human intention and technical invention, Broota's photographs exemplify a carefully mediated reality.

Photographs of Broota are considered powerful both stylistically and substantially. His series, centred around the human body, the ape-man, trees or even at times on architectonic forms are recognised for their boldness and spontaneity.

Broota paints, draws and photographs the body with clinical perfection, engaging its unseen recesses and naked flesh.


Shuvaprasanna: Recent & Retrospective
Emami Chisel Art, Kolkata
November 8 to December 8, 2011(excluding 12 & 26 November and Sundays)

Emami Chisel Art presents Shuvaprasanna:  Recent & Retrospective. The show comprises more than 100 select works is an assortment of his explorations of new themes, mediums of delineations in different forms. Besides the paintings, drawings, graphic prints on two-dimensional support bases, an added feature is some delicate sculptures and ceramics which the artist have made exclusively for this special exhibition. The exhibits feature the ominous motifs of crows, cranes with swan-like beaks, a few appearances of a cat, dog or donkey with the serenity of flora and fauna,with a different appeal. Along with the re-contextualized imagery of the urban politics of 1960s. A well-researched insight of the works included in this show, is published in the book  Black, Brown & the Blue,for this retrospective which has traversed the important cities in India throughout the entire year. The show would be inaugurated by Ms. Mamata Banerjee, Hon'ble Chief Minister of West Bengal.


Present Continuous
Talwar  Gallery, New  York
September 15 to December 20, 2011

Talwar Gallery started the exhibition on Ranjani Shettar's works. Ranjani's work created environments with sculpture and installation, fusing the two realms, man and nature together with dynamic yet graceful forms and textures, revealing the spectacle and magnanimity of natural phenomena.

One of Ranjani's works, Stretch where wood seems to have been molded like clay, while on the main level. Scent of a Sound traversed the gallery space like an unruly fragrance encompassing it like a lingering melody. The organic forms constructed with steel and muslin float in mid air confronting the viewer as they enter, daring them to step inside and imbibe. Further, in Aureole - a multi piece cast bronze silhouette of a threshold swept across the space gracefully defying materiality and weight while drawing from a millennium old tradition. Lagoon, laden with lush, rich and dense forms created from lacquered wood immersed in depths of blue, was indulgent and inviting.


Revisiting the Popular
Art Positive, New Delhi
November 10 to December 15, 2011

Kanchan Chander, in her latest solo show at Gallery Art Positive, titled Revisiting the Popular, adds a collection inspired by popular female icons from Bollywood and Hollywood; curated by Sushma Bahl, her best-selling series is the artist-diva Frida Kahlo, titled Frida & Me.

Mixed media  paper cuttings, sequins, Swarovski, laces, appliqués, bindis, stickers, nuts and bolts and much more - is, indeed Kanchan's forte. The highlight is titled, Hollywood-Bollywood, portraying film icons. Using faces of popular heroines - like Madhubala, Waheeda Rehman, Meena Kumari, Madhuri Dixit, Audrey Hepburn, Elizabeth Taylor and others- Kanchan bridges a seamless relationship between glamour, strength and success. Kanchan has merged a Hollywood face with one from Bollywood. Some are in monochrome.  Her next series of seventeen paintings on canvas are based on mythology. The largest work, Gajagamini depicts the artist riding an elephant, refers to free spirit. The next series is titled Abhivyakti nineteen paintings on paper - express women during motherhood.

In addition, there is a sculpture in aluminium & Swarovski which has been created like a grid of nine similar works of 15 inches each.


Let There be Light
Hacienda Gallery
November 14 to November 28, 2011

Experimenting with form and format, curator Jasmine Shah Varma has conceptualized this exhibition, and invited artists to get creative on specially fabricated canvas lamp shades. Fifteen artists will come together for the show, Let There be Light. 

The participating artists are Brinda Miller, Datta Bansode, Devangana Chhabria, Nitin Dadrawala, Payal Khandwala, Pradeep Mishra, Priti Kyal, Ramesh Gorjala, Sadanand, Shruti Nelson, Sheetal Gattani, Smriti Dixit, Soumen Das, Sunil & Tanuja Padwal.

There are five different designs of lamp shades made of archival quality linen canvas. There are floor lamps, table lamps and those suspended from the ceiling.

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art etc. news & views is a monthly magazine published from India in order to promote art and culture. It intends to raise awareness about art all around India and the world. The magazine covers art exhibitions, auction highlights, market trends, art happenings besides Antique, Collectibles, Fashion, Jewellery, Vintage, Furniture, Film, Music and Culture.