Art

‘Outside the Window’, an art show by six artists in Thiruvananthapuram, celebrates myriad themes and perspectives

(From left) Dr Nisha Anu, Suma SM, Nithin Thulaseedharan, Dipu Kalliyoor, Anila V and Seema CR, members of Colourbees

(From left) Dr Nisha Anu, Suma SM, Nithin Thulaseedharan, Dipu Kalliyoor, Anila V and Seema CR, members of Colourbees | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Group art exhibitions have a different vibe to them. ‘Outside the Window’, an ongoing art exhibition at Museum Auditorium in Thiruvananthapuram, has nearly 100 works of six artists, part of an art collective, Colourbees.

Formed over a year ago, Dipu Kalliyoor, Seema CR, Anila V, Suma SM, Nisha Anu and Nithin Thulaseedharan make up the Colourbees. “We all work in different fields and it was art that brought us together. We used to meet on the second Saturday of every month at a particular location to paint. Some of those works have been showcased here along with other paintings,” says Dipu, a media professional.

While Suma, Anila and Nithin are former students of Government College of Fine Arts, Thiruvananthapuram, the other three are self-taught artists. Most of the works are in acrylic.

A work by Suma SM

A work by Suma SM | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

“The best part of being in an art collective is that one gets inspired to keep painting. We named the exhibition ‘Outside the Window’ as it captures our different perspectives,” says Suma, design lead with Capgemini in Bengaluru.

She has exhibited 18 works on themes such as freedom, women, environment and homecoming. “I keep wishing to get out of the concrete jungle in Bengaluru and come home to Attingal in Thiruvananthapuram. It is a dream to live amidst the greenery,” says Suma. A stand-out work is the one in which she has tried to capture each and every city and town she has travelled to or lived in. “It is my wall of fame,” she adds.

Painting by Anila V

Painting by Anila V | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Anila is Suma’s classmate from college and is now a UI UX designer with TCS. Close to her heart is a painting dedicated to the LGBTQ community. A kite in the colours of the rainblow flag of the community is all set to fly high. Anila says: “It stands for all those people from the community who were expelled from their families when they decided to come out as a trans person. I plan to do more paintings on that topic.” Also in her collection is a series that encourages people to have faith in themselves and flourish. “I got the idea from an activity we did in office. We all can evolve and that is in our own hands,” she avers.

Nithin Thulaseedharan's painting

Nithin Thulaseedharan's painting | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Nithin, working with the creative wing of an MNC in Bengaluru, says that he has been missing working with the brush for a long time. “It has been all about computer and graphic tools all these years and I was looking for an opportunity to draw with my hand. It finally happened after I came down to Thiruvananthapuram during the lockdown and became a part of Colourbees, thanks to Suma, a former colleague.”

Although he loves to do oil painting, Nithin says the team at Colourbees encouraged him to try acrylic as well. “I am a feminist and respect that concept. So I try to include more feminine characters and figures in my works,” says Nithin.

A painting by Seema CR

A painting by Seema CR | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Seema has over three decades of experience behind her. The Kochi-based freelance artist has been doing commercial art work, especially wall art and paintings for restaurants and hotels.

“I became a part of Colourbees through Anila, my friend. For me, art was a learning tool to teach my daughters, Panchami S and Padmini S, who are home schooled,” says Seema, a facilitator at the arts session for children at the Kochi Biennale since 2016.

The artist says that it is important to develop one’s own style of work. “I like abstract work and also playing with geometrical patterns,” she adds, making special mention of ‘Limelight’, an abstract painting that has a beautiful layering and blending of colours. “This work came in my dream and it was a struggle to put it on the canvas. There is another painting in which I have put myself into it. In such cases a communication develops between me and the work. It is left to the viewer to interpret it,” she adds.

A work by Dipu Kalliyoor

A work by Dipu Kalliyoor | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Dipu says that he developed his art in the last 15 years as a journalist. “I have picked up certain aspects from the artists I have interacted with over these years. Now I am inspired to paint more works in the company of the artists at Colourbees,” he says. Some of the paintings are based on events that made news, like that of trekker Babu from Palakkad who got stuck in a mountain for 46 hours and was rescued by the Indian Army.

In the case of Dr Nisha, a Siddha-Ayurveda doctor, but for some guidance from her school teacher, she has polished her skills on her own. “I met Dipu while doing a television programme and that’s when he invited me to be part of the Colourbees. My works adorn the walls of my hospital and I am excited about exhibiting them in a public space for the first time,” says Nisha. Mural, charcoal and acrylic are the mediums she has experimented with.

A painting by Dr Nisha Anu

A painting by Dr Nisha Anu | Photo Credit: SPECIAL ARRANGEMENT

Nisha points out that she has been trying to explore the connect between humans and medicines through her works. “The symbiosis of the two is interesting and I have started working on it. I hope to go deep into it,” she says. Besides 20 paintings, she has displayed her sculptures.

‘Outside the Window’ concludes on May 22. Time: 10 am to 6.30 pm  


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Printable version | May 21, 2022 4:01:28 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/entertainment/art/painting-exhibition-six-artists-colourbees-thiruvananthapuram/article65441841.ece