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New mediums, new horizons

ANASUYA MENON
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Art Two shows, on at Durbar Hall Art Gallery, use oil and sand with great felicity

Creativity in sand

Artist A.U. Venugopal from Edappally believes in remaining close to the earth, even in his artistic aspirations. A Vastushastra practitioner, he entered the art world with great trepidation. “You know how it is. There are big names and you are not sure, if you would even be given a chance to display your works,” he says.

When he approached the Durbar Hall Art Gallery, however, he was allotted space to exhibit.

Unconventional art

Venugopal’s drawings are not conventional pen or charcoal on paper or canvas, they are black outlines on metal sheets. Venugopal talks about his unusual art: “I have mixed crushed rock powder with glass powder and a powerful gum to make a paste. Then, using a splinter, I have drawn these designs on metal sheets, mainly aluminium.”

After the outline is made and fine-tuned, the work has to be immersed in water at least for about ten days. It hardens on the surface of the metal and acquires a “finished” appearance. Venugopal has drawn elegant Ganeshas and Nataraj and several sage-like beings and the Buddha. Silhouettes of dainty people and animals, too, form part of the collection. While most of the drawings are on aluminium, some have also been done on bronze, steel, brass and copper.

A large work on Lord Vishwakarma is the highlight of the show. It is also the work which required the most care while executing, Venugopal says.

He took about ten days to complete the single work. He plans to work on colour next.

The exhibition is on till May 31.

ANASUYA MENON

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