In nature's lap

Sculpture art

Everything looks best in the open. This holds true not only for art, but for human beings as well. When you are out there, you become a part of nature,” says award-winning sculpture K S Radhakrishnan whose latest exhibition ‘In the Open’ is an ode to sculptures in natural settings.

Around 30 large scale outdoor sculptures done by the artist over last three decades are displayed at Ojas Art Gallery. Apart from this, the show also showcases a pictorial documentation of Radhakrishnan’s site specific works installed in various national and international venues.

His fascination for bronze is no secret as he feels the medium has fluidity to create linear structures that look acrobatic in nature. But feels their movements evoke thinking mind and initiate conversations. “I don’t think I will ever get bored of bronze. During my early years in Santiniketan, I did try concrete, carving wood and fibre glass, but bronze has that kind of strength to suspend pliant and lean figures in the air,” he recollects.

Born in Kottayam district in Kerala, the artist made the capital his home. But his artistic moorings took shape in Santiniketan, West Bengal. He has had more than fifteen solo shows including at Centre des Bonds de Marne in LePerreux-Bry sur Marne (Paris), Lalit Kala Akademi (New Delhi), Birla Academy of Art and Culture (Kolkata).

Even though he is an advocate of promoting art in public places, Radhakrishnan feels India has a lot of ground to cover when it comes to installing sculptures in open spaces. “There should have been more sculptures in public places in India than what we have today. We have a long way to go if we are looking at the West for inspiration,” he says.

Admitting there are several deterrents to give sculptures their due credit, he feels the role of an artist is to do responsible things for public. “I understand that we (artists) need to sell our works, but at the same time we have to take public into our account and design accordingly,” he says.

In the city, Radhakrishnan’s sculptures are displayed at prominent places like the India Habitat Centre and Garden of Five Senses. “When I create sculptures, I want people to associate with them so that it gives them a space to think, and helps them develop an understanding of how they interpret it and perceive it,” he says.

“Everyone has different perceptions, and sculptures should allow them to cultivate a sensible idea,” he adds.The exhibition is accompanied by a book written by art historian and critic Johny ML focussing on Radhakrishnan’s open air sculptures.

“Radhakrishnan’s works are not decorative pieces. They are contemporary works of art with a strong sense of artistic individuality expressed in the enduring medium of bronze. I am quite interested in showcasing this internationally recognised artist’s sculptural narratives with all its mythical, folklore-ish and contemporary vigour,” says curatorial director Anubhav Nath, Ojas Art.

The exhibition ‘In the Open’ is on till March 25 at Ojas Art, Mehrauli.

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