A. Vasudevan's latest works of art titled ‘Morning Glory' derives inspiration from his travels across the country

The paintings crowding the small foyer of the Sunny Sistems gallery play off a number of apparent dichotomies; not only representing the familiar and unfamiliar, but also the past and the present, the natural and man-made.

This is ‘Morning Glory,' the first solo exhibition of artist A. Vasudevan, an MFA student at the Government Fine Arts College. The series derives inspiration from Vasudevan's travels through India, where such contradictions are at their strongest, particularly in the architecturally diverse monuments which dot various regions of the country.

Vasudevan toys with time, history, change and modernity. The exhibition takes its name from a time of day which is in fact, almost timeless — the dark stillness of dawn blurs the barriers of time, as people slip easily into age-old rituals which have persisted over the years.

In many parts of India, man-made temples and similar historical structures have stood the test of time; both retaining material structure by holding their own against the elements, and retaining cultural significance by continuing to draw devoted crowds. Using a distinct colour palette of yellow, red, gold and brown, Vasudevan highlights the concurrent simplicity and grandeur of archways and flights of stairs, conspicuous even in the darkness of dawn, contrasted with smaller, flimsier hallmarks of our own time — telegraph poles and electric wires which firmly root the scenes in the current century.

However old these structures are, Vasudevan reminds us that they are still infant constructions, outdone by that most magnificent and ancient of all things — nature. A flood of white and gold light echoes through several of the paintings, awing both the temple-goers in the paintings, engrossed in a seemingly timeless routine, and the viewer, who is exposed to Vasudevan's own “view” of a country evolving within an ancient framework.

The exhibition is on till January 7 at Sunny Sistems Gallery located at No. 58, Second main road, Gandhi Nagar.

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Arts, Entertainment & EventsMay 14, 2012