Charming folklores get colourful canvas

The beautiful technique of expressing one’s words through paintings and craft is also known as ‘Art’.

And it the creativity that lies within oneself that makes us distinct from others. It is this uniqueness of three contemporary artists, Bhajju Singh Shyam, Mayank Kumar Shyam and Sukhnandi Vyam from the Pradhaan community, one of the largest tribes of central India, Madhya Pradesh, that is winning  hearts and minds of people at the Art Alive Gallery’ in the City. The month-long exhibition, entitled ‘Storytellers’, is a colourful narrative through which  the Pradhaans narrate tales of mankind and nature, passed on to them from one generation to another.

The artists have created a new body of works through which they are developing a strong contemporary language by standing apart from their clan. Sukhanandi Vyam’s works in clay and wood make the viewers eager to know more about Gond cultural traditions while Bhajju Shyam’s motifs are drawn from nature, from the Gond pantheon, folk tales, and the community’s origin myths. Mayank Kumar Shyam, also a Gond artist from Madhya Pradesh has already created a space for himself in the world of art when he was featured in the book Freedom sixty years after Indian Independence’ along with legends like Rabindra Nath Tagore, Paramjit and Arpita Singh and other contemporary artists. He has also won the State award (2005 – 2006) for mastercraftspersons and weavers.

Metrolife got a chance to meet Mayank Kumar Shyam and discuss about his career and paintings.  Sharing his dream and journey of becoming an artist, he says that he his concentrating more on his future projects. “My father was an artist. Since my childhood days I too had a feverish desire to become an artist. I grew up watching brushes, colours used by my father at my home. My father has a big role in nurturing my interest in paintings. He taught me all the basics of art. I always wanted to work like my father. When I felt that I was capable of doing it alone, I started working on a different medium as I want to do something unique,” shares Mayank, while crediting his father for his success.

There are few moments which we can’t forget in our life. Recalling one such moment the young artist says “My father used to say ‘jo dil kare woh bana beta’. After a few years when I met people in the world of art, everyone endorsed my father’s word. I want to say that “ek artist ka sab kuchch andar se nikalta hai. My father was the one who discovered Gond art.

After his death, when I started painting as a profession, people said it’s not Gond art. You should quit art. But I didn’t leave it as the work I did was something different in Gond art which people appreciated later.”

“I can’t say much about my future projects but there are chances of me going to Paris as people liked my work,” says Mayank.

The exhibition is on till February 20.

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