At Vikash Kalra’s “Angels in History”, art acted as a medium for the ‘inner’ self

To conceptualise art in different forms is not difficult, but to give them physical shape is perhaps the most trying task for any artist. In this regard, 39-year-old Vikash Kalra succeeds with flying colours. His collection of 30 oil paintings, 15 sculptures and drawings — collectively known as the “Angels of History” — were exhibited recently at the India Habitat Centre and Art Konsult at Lado Sarai in New Delhi.

Marked by a bold use of colours, Kalra’s art is all about expressing the self by painting imaginary forms, landscapes and faces. For the curator Johny M.L., the artist’s work is a reflection of the hidden, darker and animalistic side of human beings. Speaking of a role reversal in the works exhibited, Johny added, “In our times the angels are devils. In these paintings one can see the tables turned. Here, devils have become angels.”

The distorted forms and faces, thus, appear to be echoes of the subconscious, which are not only wild and beastly but also highly imaginative and impressionable as they are successful in transforming the hideous demonic subjects into art angels.