Look through the layers to fathom the meaning of Kumaresan Selvaraj’s art works on view at Gallery Veda

The representation of the individual and the human in a constantly changing environment form a rich ground for artists. In this, the need to portray the newness of one’s perception often drives the artist to seek out new materials, new forms and new imagery. Kumaresan Selvaraj has gone in for all the three aspects, vigorously and with much success, as evidenced by his show titled Visible-Invisible at Gallery Veda in the city. The result of his effort has been to produce Art that defies classification as sculpture or installation, much the same as his apparently favourite subjects – the human mind and body.

Visual representation of ideas is tricky and Kumaresan innovatively uses layers to convey various meanings. Whether it is magazine pages used in “Memories” or “Pedestal,” or frozen oozing pigment used in “Number of layers on my surface” (deco paint on wood) or the subdued hues of “Untitled” (paper on wood) works, layers convey the hidden invisible side and the patterns, sometimes turbulent, which we instantly perceive, are visible on the surface.

The human body, to Kumaresan, is a container, albeit with many openings. The container features prominently in some of his works, some even carrying the same title. “Our body is a mould, that is why I have exhibited a bronze mould as an art work,” he says. According to him, every work is born out of an experience. “I remember standing near a well once. There was a mountain next to it. I was simultaneously at a height and a depth. It prompted me to create this sculpture,” he says, pointing to “White being peak and valley.”

“Ornamentation” and “Excessive representation” are some of the rarer pieces that are a comment on the external world.

Having trained in painting, it took Kumaresan some time to break into the third dimension, but now his works spring forth as if propelled by the force of the long wait. However, many of these still use a frame, a canvas or a wall as a base, indicating an attachment to his former style.

There is much to see and wonder about in these exhibits which are on view for a month at Gallery Veda.