Two artists' works give a tangible form to their thoughts and journeys

The show ‘Metaphors and Materials' brings together the works of Shalini Biswajit and Puneet Kaushik showcasing their thoughts and journeys.

Shalini's works is the crystallisation of a spiritual breakthrough during her trek to the Mt. Everest base camp. Puneet's works explore a discovery of self through a series of surfaces and textures.

Throbbing with passionate colour, Shalini's works are the carrying forward of her series ‘Ever at Rest', where she gives life to her memories of her trek. In this series, she adds a new element — steel — to bring another dimension to her work. Almost biographic in nature, the paintings explore a deep spirituality brought to the surface during the trek.

The neutral grey of steel serves as the perfect foil to the brilliant colours on her canvas, with evocative ‘windows' in the metal showing trapped patches of colour underneath, — a bridging of the outside and the inside — representing the physical experience of the body opening up windows to an intense spiritual awakening.

The chilling blues of the glacier, the blue-greens representing her traversing forest and ice, and the pulsating reds describing her spiritual encounter are tempered with the cool impersonality of steel.

Shalini's twin sculptures in steel and fibreglass ‘I Am what I Am' is a self-portrait; a metaphor of the past that shaped her, and the future she longs to achieve. She shows herself caught in a poignant moment — between the red fibreglass of her journey that was the source of an inner awakening and the lotus at her feet signifying her desire to rise above her surroundings and everyday situations to bloom. The graceful line of the woman seems to undulate and shape itself around the red fibreglass, the flow of the body drawing the eye to the pristine purity of the lotus she aspires to become.

Tactile longing

Puneet Kaushik focusses on materials to express himself — the delicacy of fine steel wire woven and crocheted, and the dainty coral beads creating a surface that begs to be touched. His works create more a tactile longing than a visual experience.

A series on canvas and a series of installations bring out Puneet's concept and his exploration of surfaces leading to self-discovery.

His painted series titled ‘The Surface and the Self' explores organic forms gleaned from Nature, in which he focusses on the very basic of life — the cell. Coral beads cluster in patches on the canvas, adding to the delicacy of the acrylic and watercolour bases. The irregular patches of coral bring an organic feel of growth to the canvas. Puneet takes the two-dimensional surface and gives it a three-dimensional aspect with the elements of weave, crochet and beadwork.

His installations explore a consciousness that is ethereal and dreamy; the cob-webby delicacy of the wire speaks of a calm serenity. Metaphors of his expression of the self and society, the light airiness of the woven wire belies the tough strength of steel.

Through it all, the metaphor is the underlying motif in the works of both Shalini Biswajit and Puneet Kaushik, and every single creative output on display is a representation of a thought, an experience or a discovery.

(The exhibition is on till April 12th April from 11.00 a.m. to 7.00 p.m. at Forum Art Gallery, 5th Street, Venkateswara Nagar, Adyar)

Keywords: art exhibition

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At WorkSeptember 24, 2010