Capturing the everyday life of Kerala's backwaters is a four-day painting exhibition by Suresh Muthukulam that opens at Visual Arts Gallery of India Habitat Centre here this Sunday.

Titled “Backwater Cameos”, the exhibition shows Suresh exploring the scenic beauty and laidback ambience of his State.

The turning point in Suresh's life as an artist came in 1994 when he returned to his village: “I began venturing beyond the boundaries and dictates of traditional art and started experimenting with different colours and themes. My work found a new life and I embarked on an exciting new journey. The scenario that inspired ‘Backwater Cameos', which has been the body of my work over the past 18 months, is the everyday life of rural Kerala.”

Blending myth, reality and fantasy, Suresh consciously relates to his cultural context. His keen eye for detail, wit and humour bring his paintings to life. Suresh follows the ancient technique of mural painting, using as far as possible natural colours and the elements of this tradition to create works on canvas in a contemporary style. Some of his works are a combination of images from the Puranas and everyday village life. His expertise lies in the portrayal of godly reincarnations and mythological forms in everyday situations.

Suresh's portrayal of “The Last Supper” in the traditional Kerala mural style was gifted by the Kerala Government to the Vatican Museum. His work on Mahatma Gandhi's historic Salt March is part of the Gandhi Museum Collection in New Delhi. He has the skill and vision to bridge the past with present.

Jaya Mani of Gallery Dravidam is the curator of the show.

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