A stamp of their own

Vibrant lines

A stamp of their own

It was an explosion of colours and creativity at the Chitra Santhe, an art fair organised by the Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath, recently. 

Held annually, this vibrant affair was spread out on both sides of the roads just outside the Parishath, and included artists who were doing pencil sketches, elaborate and intricate work and those who had explored art forms in their own special way.

Nageswar, an artist from Hyderabad, works on paintings based on personalities. The collection he brought to the Santhe was that of musicians from across the country.

 “I have painted MS Subbulakshmi, KJ Yesudas, Pattammal etc  as I have a close connection with music. I had learnt to play the mridangam and music is in the family,” said Nageswar. 

He added that he usually paints only from 5 am to 10 am, and from 11 pm to 1 am. “I get to concentrate entirely on my passion then. I make it a point to listen to the artistes’ music while working on the paintings as this adds to the creativity and the details,” elaborated Nageswar.

Like many contemporary artists, Sibi P Martin from Kerala uses a different technique for creating scenes of nature. 

“I use the knife to dab paint and give a realistic look. I mostly do scenes from nature as they appeal to all. One of my most unique creations is that which I painted on a rubber sheet,” said Sibi pointing to the work. 

The artist who loves to explore different mediums said that this was one of the most difficult mediums to work on.

Following the trends of today, GK Ram who hails from Rajasthan, said that people are more into dharmic art forms now and thus art figurines, like Kamadhenu, are what he concentrates on. 

“We do hand painting on these works and apart from adding aesthetics to the place, they also depict religious sentiments,” he added.

A Bangalore-based artist, Shoba Rani, tried to explore the planets and the galaxies through her ‘Cosmos’ series. “I have been painting for many years but it’s since the last four years that I started working on glass. The most challenging part about glass paintings is the mixing of colours and giving the shading effect since the colours keep running,” 

she said. Shoba said that often, a lot of work goes into making these paintings. To add to the effect, one has to paint on the reverse side also.

Exploring art on many levels were works from West Bengal by Probir. While his painting scrolls are in pattachitra format, he makes it a point to sing the story behind each image, with subjects varying from HIV/ AIDS to the tsunami or traditional stories from the Ramayana and Mahabharatha. “Done in vegetable dyes, it might take from one to 20 days to finish a piece. I have tried the art form on T-shirts, hand fans, jewellery boxes and in scroll format,” detailed Probir. 

Highlighting issues and various topics of discussions was KN Narayana Murthy, a mystic artist who makes artwork through the inkblot technique.

 “This is the simple fold-unfold technique that one is taught or learns from childhood. But to make images out of this technique takes patience,” he said.

Covering topics from the Uttarakhand tragedy and the demise of Nelson Mandela to the recent ATM tragedy in the City, Narayana Murthy has an image for almost anything under the sun. “I disperse ink in the required pattern when a page is folded so that these images can be produced. I have brought 50 different pieces related to the Uttarakhand tragedy to the Santhe. I worked on this particular theme as we lost our relatives in this tragedy,” he wrapped up.

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