A fortnight-long exhibition of the recent works of Ahmedabad-based artist Apurva Desai opened at Art Alive here over the weekend. Titled "Rhythms", the exhibition sums up Apurva's associations and introspections born out of his experience with urban landscape.
Over the past 15 years, Apurva has been painting the city and its various industrial locations. The artist has no reservation about being labelled as an "urban landscapist" as he has seen from close quarters the pitiable condition of unemployed labourers and the agony of coal miners. "When I sat next to a ship-breaking yard at Alang in Gujarat to paint on my canvas, I contemplated on the heaps of scraps for which crores of rupees were paid. The experience taught me about the whole existence of human life and the irony of earning a livelihood," said Apurva.
Speaking about his ongoing exhibition, Apurva said: "In my works you will see human bodies as well as portraits, actions as well as speed, postures as well as gestures, an urgency of the rhythms of everyday living. For me, the human is rendered as my father, my brother, my daughter and the energetic youth who twists and turns through life trying to make up his mind about what he wants to do in life. So when the human is a complete summation of hopes, aspirations, sorrows, dreams joys and dynamism then there is so much happening that it must be portrayed as this confluence of so many shades and shadows of time." A combination of interest and intrigue, the show basically portrays the expression of human predicament and the zooming in on the youthful figure of humanity.
Born in 1962 at Baroda, Apurva completed his diploma in painting from the C. N. College of Fine Art in Ahmedabad in 1987 and masters in painting from M. S. University in Baroda in 1989. He has held 15 solo shows in various cities including Kolkata, Ahmedabad and New Delhi. He has participated in several group shows, more prominent among which are Fifth Northern Region Art Exhibition in Delhi 1993 and Goan Art Forum in 1995. -- Madhur Tankha