Kanchandas Gupta’s Strides Of Dignity is an eclectic narrative that brings together his impressions of art and artistes; all in a manner that juxtaposes the real with the surreal. This solo show features over two dozen paintings of the Kolkata-based artist. The introduction to his work at the gallery reads, ‘Kanchandas Gupta is known for his skill as a figurative painter and whose works capture the essence of human drama. The two dimensional pictorial format that he works in brims with emotions and dramatism through his use of intensely emotive colours and epic charm.’
And indeed, this dramatism is seen most in the central piece of the exhibit A Performer With Another Face . Standing tall at 72 inches, acrylic in canvas, it portrays a joker with a mask in his hand and another one painted on to his face, almost as if one is meant to ponder over the masks artistes have to wear to entertain, and when does it come off, and if it does at all...
The paintings on display are his take on people and places, as well as the pursuit of success and work. Conflicting images such as a pigeon perched atop a gun and two Untitled paintings with one depicting a fertile, picturesque landscape, and the other a rundown shanty placed right next to each other, all add to the inherent drama that his art reflects. A prominent series in the exhibit titled Random Thoughts Parallel Autopsy featuring about a dozen paintings brims with layers of elements, quite literally as the paintings are often an amalgamation of many smaller works woven together, each one bringing in a new perspective to the larger picture.
(Strides Of Dignity is on till February 23, at Gallery Veda, 4/22, Rutland Gate, 4th Street, Nungambakkam)