Whether you have lived in the particularly endearing cantonment area for some time, or paid a visit to its charming environs, you will surely appreciate what you see at aPaulogy, ‘a gallery of curious illustration' created by Paul Fernandes.
The 50 drawings on display near the entrance of Richard's Park in east Bangalore will surely draw a few laughs.
“Around five years ago, I started a light-hearted portrayal of my reminiscences of Bangalore, especially of the 1970s. Most of the sketches are based on my experiences as well as those of my friends and family,” Fernandes shared.
The artist has made a careful yet satirical note of what he has been observing over the decades. Some pictures are of famous landmarks of the Cantonment such as Thoms Cafe and Bakery on Wheeler Road, Everest cinema on Madhavaraya Mudaliar Road (both in Fraser Town), and Ulsoor lake. His drawings depict how several communities despite their cultural, religious and linguistic diversity live in harmony.
There is a picture of a cycle rickshaw puller struggling with his heavily built customer on the now flattened St. John's Hill. There are also small models of this vehicle at the exhibition. “This was the best mode of transport to negotiate the ups and downs of the terrain,” he said.
Some of his sketches are a humorous take on orchestra conductors, and he describes them as those whose “pride comes before their fall”. While most of the illustrations are watercolour prints, a few are in black and white.
Fernandes's drawings also highlight the integrity and sincerity of yesteryear policemen. “They were tough with men who were caught in an inebriated condition and would ensure that people who rode bicycles at night had their lamps on,” he said.
A multi-faceted artist, the unassuming Fernandes's work has been compared to that of the legendary Mario Miranda. Having completed his degree in commercial art from the renowned, M.S. University in Vadodara, he earlier worked in advertising. He has contributed illustrations to books such as Multiple City – Writings on Bangalore by Aditi De, Peter Colaco's On a High Note, Hung by my Family Tree by Ajit Saldanha and a leading Indian travel magazine.