PANKAJA SRINIVASAN

Art lovers in the city feasted on a banquet of lines, images, colours and forms at two separate art expos. Pankaja Srinivasan reports

Last year, then again this year, the Coimbatore Vizha held out great promise, especially to those in the world of art. Along with heritage, environment, music, dance and food, art received tremendous fillip.

Ovia Santhai brought art out to the streets, literally. The common man had a chance to get up close with artists from all over Tamil Nadu at Race Course.

For everyone

It was a carnival that threw open art to the public who browsed, studied, admired and bought these works. Raviraj, director of Lalit Kalakshetra, a Fine Arts Academy in the city said more than two lakh rupees worth of paintings were sold. “This is going to be an annual feature,” he assured us.

Tracing art

Elsewhere, another exhibition called Tracing Trajectories also celebrated the vizha.

It was the maiden showing of the Coimbatore College of Contemporary Arts (CoCCA) ( see box), and was held at the PSG IM. It traced the works of Indian artists from the Independence era such as Ram Kumar right down to ones like Nandan Ghiya who painted in the times of Indian liberalisation.

There were sculpture installations, painted surfaces, lithographs and etchings that introduced the viewer to the range of forms Indian artists have been working with. A description provided by leading art scholars accompanied each display. It explained the social, historical and cultural relevance of the work.

Narratives

Art historian and curator of the exhibition, Nivedita Mohanraj was pleased with the public response. “There were many questions, opinions and observations expressed on the exhibits, and that was gratifying,” she said.

Nandan Ghiya‘s “Dude do you think it is alright”, drew smiles - it showed a kid with his parents who had monster heads. Men in camouflage patrolled Delhi in Vibha Galhotra's Neo Camouflage, while Jitish Kallat's painting of Mumbai was one of crowded and mobbed textures. One viewed the works of people such as Jayashree Chakravarty, Rameswar Broota, G.R. Iranna, Bose Krishnamachari, A Balasubramanium, Anupam Sud, Rekha Rodwittiya, Gopi Krishna, Anita Dube, Ravinder Reddy and Sunil Gawde.

A lecture by artist and art historian Suresh Jayaram, explained simply the discipline of Visual Arts.

The Coimbatore Vizha made good its promise to bring Art to the people, and one looks forward to the event next year.

About COCCA

Combatore College of Contemporary Arts (CoCCA) is the brainchild of art aficionado Rajshree Pathy and her artist daughter Aishwarya.

It is an initiative that will support two art establishments, one an art museum and the other an art institute.

The institute will offer graduate programmes in Visual Arts, Design, Museum Studies and Arts Administration.

The art institute hopes to start functioning by 2012.

To know more visit www.contemplate.co.in or call 9894771177.

More In: METRO PLUS | FEATURES