‘Five Days in August’ brings together seven artists and their varied explorations at Durbar Hall Art Gallery
A tribute to the unity of man and nature, melancholic scenes within a rainforest, a depiction of the passage of time and a view of green fields; these are some of the sights that are on display at the Durbar Hall Art Gallery as part of ‘Five Days in August’, an exhibition of the works of seven artists. O. Sunder, Prathapan G., Sunil Vallarpadam, Surendran K., Bindhi Rajagopal, Nandan P.V. and Asanthan are the artists whose works are on display.
The dark canvas with the image of a woman and her own image superimposed upon her is Sunder’s take on the many layered nature of womanhood. The subtle brushwork portrays her many moods and emotions. Women are also the subject of Prathapan’s work depicting three birds with passion fruit in the background, drawing parallels between the graceful nature and calm disposition of birds, and women.
Bindhi’s ‘Cuckoo Nest’ and ‘Black Forest’ depict facets of the environment that are slowly going extinct, with each work showing its namesake in sombre hues. Nandan, on the other hand, has two works with varying portrayals of cattle. While one depicts a cow whose entire frame is made up of smaller, skilfully placed calves, the other is made up of 24 smaller pictures of an Indian Bison lining three walls of the gallery, tracing its motion around the room in almost imperceptible increments. Surendran’s solitary work is of a plant locally known as ‘Communist Pacha’, and is part of a series of eight works he has done featuring the plant.
Sunil has one work that was created on the date 12/12/12, with different words splashed across the canvas, and images they invoked in the artist’s mind surrounding them. “I found the date quite fascinating, and did this work to commemorate it,” he says. “The words I have used represent the emotions people experience often nowadays, and that was the idea behind the work.” The canvas reveals red-eyed horses, and other beasts, galloping across it amidst words such as ‘lost’, ‘fear’ and ‘alienation’.
In contrast to this rather bleak take on society, Asanthan brings a slightly more cheerful theme to his works. “I tried to capture the unity between all forms of nature,” he says, pointing towards the image of a bird interwoven into the spreading branches of a tree, “birds, trees, animals and humans all coexisting in harmony; that is the theme of these works.”
The exhibition is on till August 31 at the Durbar Hall Art Gallery.