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Updated: December 13, 2013 20:01 IST

The beauty of colour

Harshini Vakkalanka
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Running riot: On the canvas
Special Arrangement Running riot: On the canvas

Gayatri Shantaram plays with colour, line, form and aesthetic in her latest exhibition Mandala

Colours become a visual treat in Shantaram’s works. Washes of creamy colour like frosting, bands of shades ordered into motifs amidst a sheet of black, rivulets of colour seeping down the canvas like rain on the windowpane or simply splashes on canvas run riot through the works.

Gayatri Shantaram, in her latest exhibition Mandala, playfully explores the technique of her abstracts.

The exhibition also features a series of watercolours, showcasing two species of birds in an equally playful yet skilful manner.

In this series, she paints largely in watercolours on rice paper creating a graphic, lively effect. Within this series too, she explores different styles, sometimes working with neat washes of colour in clean lines, sometimes using typical strokes of watercolour shades, sometimes placing the birds in rich, textured backgrounds, and at other times using simple black lines with a touch of colour.

“The abstract works are full of vibrant colours and textures with metallic tints while the figuratives, largely of birds are linear, composed using strong black lines,” says Gayatri.

“The idea of the birds was inspired by the guinea fowls I saw at a friend’s farm in Chennai.

“I was attracted by the fowls because they were quirky with their big balloon-like bodies, their small heads and the fact that they can’t fly.

The bird series started there and now I am painting the Japanese red-crowned crane. They are an endangered species.”

The abstracts, meanwhile, she says are simply based on form and aesthetics.

Gayatri largely paints using knives, her hands and the back of her brush, with very little brushwork. Through the series, as with her older work, Gayatri says she tries to restrict herself to three essential colours: red, white and black. “That was an interesting experience.”

The exhibition will be on view until January 2 at HabitArt , 3, Krishna Garden. 5th D main, 1st Block, Kormangala. For details, contact 41107887 or 9821576784.

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