A tiny café where art meets over coffee, it is a riot of colours, expressions and mediums at Junction Art Café Gallery, Kovalam Junction, where 25 artists display their works. While some of the artists are up-and-coming and hold promise, most of the participating artists are renowned.

Nature has long been a topic of fascination for most artists. While for some its nature in all her resplendent glory that inspires them to capture it on frame, for others it's man's exploitation of nature that leads them to pick up the brush. For Sreenandan, his untitled work in pencil and ink has him capturing the loss of nature.

Stunting nature

Surendran P.K.'s ‘Thulasi' with steps' is also arresting. A thulasi is juxtaposed against a house with a stairway. When at first one does not see any anomaly in the picture, one then notices that the thulasi and the plants in it fall below the stairway. Nature's growth is stunted to suit the ways and life of the people is what this painting seems to tell us. While Lal K.'s painting tries to cup the remains of nature due to man's irreverence for nature in the name of development, Prasanna Kumar's frame depicts nature's flora and fauna dying due to man's abuse on nature.

From nature, the topics moved to lighter themes and scenes. Rimzon's ‘Shrine under the moon' has a temple by moonlight and although Jyothi Basu's oil canvas ‘Starry Night III' seemed a tad amateurish at first, you soon notice the attention to detail when you take a closer look. It is not stars on paint, there is a city lying beneath it.

Susan Beulah's water colour painting of a beach in the city has scenes of people spending a day at the beach while Pradeep Puthoor's ‘Night Watch' in brilliant shades of pink arrests the viewers' attention as one steps into the cafe. The painting, which depicts two birds standing watch also, has what looks like veins zig-zagging across the frame. One wonders if the artist is trying to show the adrenaline rush one gets when one is standing guard or watching for prey.

The exhibition that has been organised in memory of the late poet A. Ayyappan is on until February 27. The exhibition also marks the café's first anniversary. The artists whose works are on display are Aji V.N., Ajithkumar G., Alex Mathew, Anilkumar Janardanan, Aparna Caur, Bhagyanath Jain C.D., Jyothibasu, Jyothikumar, Nijeena Neelambaran, Pradeep C., Prsannakumar, Rajan M. Krishnan, Rajani S.R., Rathidevi, Rimzon N.N., Sajitha Shankar, Shibu Natesan, Sosa Joseph, Sreenandanan, Sunil G. and Surendran P.K. and Susan Beaulah. Contact: 2480868.

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