Curated by Anubhav Nath
Scenography by Oroon Das
Buddhist Architecture Panels by Vikram Lall
BIMSTEC member countries, namely Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, Myanmar, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Thailand share common elements of heritage and culture. A striking common feature is Buddhism. In most of the BIMSTEC countries, Buddhist philosophy is a way of life. Buddhism constitutes a bridge between South and South-East Asia.
Buddhism celebrates the organic and ever-changing nature of life. The “four noble truths” of Buddhism – existence is suffering, there is a cause to the suffering, the eightfold path, ending the suffering — encapsulate this nature rather subtly. This simple Buddhist message with profound implications is entering the consciousness of many in India and the world. Many creative artistes are turning to the tenets of Buddhism for inspiration.
This world represents a transitory tunnel through which all beings must travel and no one ever stays here forever. We all travel in a constant consistence, making our way to Nirvana. Art just makes the process easier.
The quest to express and understand is an inherent nature of all beings. Bodhi Parva, the art exhibition of paintings, photography, ceramics, sculpture and installations will encourage and hear the voices of such questioning minds
The exhibition continues at Ojas Art Gallery 1AQ, Near Qutab Minar, Mehrauli, New Delhi
Dec 14, 2017 till Jan 15, 2018. Open 11am to 7pm. Open on Sunday; Closed on Monday.
Singh has been working on the imagery of gods and goddesses for the last ten years. His graphic novels, Krishna –A Journey Within, Deepak Chopraand Shekhar Kapur’s Ramayana 3392 A.D, Kali and Shiva have sold over half a million copies and have been translated into four languages. His artworks have been exhibited at Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and Asia Society Texas Center, Houston. His solo public project, Shiva in Varanasi with Ojas Art was well received and viewed by millions of people.
A trained architect, Adil holds a Master’s degree in architecture from University of Houston, Texas. He learnt the art of ceramics at Golden Bridge Pottery and since 2000 is a partner at Mandala Pottery in Auroville.
Writer’s ceramics and large-scale unfired clay and acrylic paintings have been showcased at several solo and group exhibitions in Japan, China, India, Australia, France and USA. He is also a member of the Academy of Ceramics, Geneva.
Arya is an eminent commercial and travel photographer. He began professional photography in 1980 after graduating in History from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University. In addition to his wide-ranging Commercial and Travel portfolio, his work has been published widely in books and travel magazines around the world. He also devotes his time to his photography archive and Museo Camera – the only Photography and Camera Museum in India. With more than 2000 rare and iconic cameras and other equipment, this museum traces the history of photography from the 1870s to the Digital Era.
BhajjuShyam is a master Gond artist who has illustrated more than ten books, which have been translated into four languages. His best-known book, “London Jungle Book” has alone sold more than 30,000 copies. In 2015, he received the Ojas Art Award for Master Artist in collaboration with Jaipur Literature Festival and Teamwork Arts.
In all his works, his captivating visuals and easy storytelling style fuse his perceptions of the modern world with his tribe’s unique visual language.
Chemat’s work draws from his experience of growing up in the village of Sakti, in Ladakh. His early years were completely rooted in the Ladakhi cultural and physical environment. As he grew up, he began to recognise distinctly Ladakhi culturalmarkers, largely in the form of Buddhist religious edifices, prayer walls, chortens (stupa), carvings in the rock face. Some of these shapes began to enter Chemat’s work evoking his imagination to reflect the technologies and aesthetics of Ladakh.
Through impressions of the rocky terrain or the harsh realities of living at a high altitude, forms of vernacular architecture clinging to the steep hillside, the subtle beauty of a lotus, the slow amble of a yak, a belief in the mythical dragon, Chemat reveals the intimate aspects of life in Ladakh. But he is most obsessed with the objectification of the ‘spindle’ – using the spiralling device to convey the Buddhist metaphor of the constantly spinning, endless circle of life. Beyond that, it represents the primordial axis, the ancestors, the ebb and flow of our very existence.
Deepak belongs to Tumkur in Karnataka and graduated from M.S.University, Baroda in 2017. Deepak’s style is a continued exploration of the artist’s work with drawing surfaces, sound and video lines, and specifically looking at how a line creates a form, as well as the repetitive nature of the process becoming part of the artwork itself. The process of making lines is a meditative exercise for the artist, where the involvement with the visual language becomes a conceptual promise of the work, and the works themselves become a testimony to a kind of a ritual performed day in and day out. He has participated in a drawing video display in the Student Biennale, Kochi – 2015 and in several art presences in Shanti Niketan.
Earlier this year, LAMO (The Ladakh Arts and Media Organisation) proposed collaboration between a thangka painter and a contemporary artist to discover the synergies between the two artistic styles, and a potential to create new work. While thangka painting is an old and established art form in Ladakh, contemporary art is a fairly new field. Commonalities, as well as differences, are visible in the two forms – while the first is taught in a structured manner within a fixed theological framework, the latter is imparted as a flexible genre.
The collaboration that took place between Isaac TsetanGergan, a contemporary artist and StanzinNyentak, a traditional thangka painter developed a body of work, which reflects new directions using traditional methods, styles and techniques of art-making. This collaboration of styles is an experimentation to see what transpires when our treasured traditional values have an interface with our contemporary sensibilities.
Jamyang Dorje Chakrishar is a Calligrapher and a teacher living in the North- Eastern State of India, Sikkim, who received his school education in Shimla and later worked and retired as a senior official for the Govt of Sikkim.
He currently works for the Conservancy for Trans Himalayan Arts and Culture, an NGO dedicated to the preservation of Himalayan cultural heritage. He is the current world record holder for the longest calligraphy scroll.
KS Radhakrishnan is a sculptor from Kottayam, Kerala. He was educated in Santiniketan, West Bengal. He has had more than fifteen solo shows including at the Centre des Bonds de Marne in LePerreux-Bry Sur Marne (Paris), Lalit Kala Akademi (New Delhi), Birla Academy of Art and Culture (Kolkata).
Among the numerous group shows at which his works have been exhibited are the Triennalle India (1990); Salon International de la Sculpture Contemporaine at Nouveau Forum des Halles, Paris (1995) and Espace Michel Simon-Noisy le grand, France (1996).
Radhakrishnan has installed open-air sculptures across the country and abroad including one at the India House, London; TMI Foundation, Cotignac and most recently in public areas in Goa and Santiniketan. His other curatorial projects include RamkinkarBaij: A Retrospective, at the NGMA, New Delhi in 2012 and a solo show at Ojas Art in 2015.
Mahaveer Swami is a descendant from a family of traditional Bikaneri painters. As a child, he began training with his father M.R. Swami and grandfather M.D Swami. Later he studied under late Vedpal Sharma “Bannu” in Jaipur.
Mahaveer is one of the finest traditional artists working in India today. His ethereal colours and exquisite brushwork are combined with a unique inner vision and great sensitivity of the world around him by tempering his personal vision with the finely tuned technique and rigorous discipline of this tradition. He proves that there is no real gap between contemporary and traditional, there is only art. His work demonstrates that a rich and beautiful tradition is still very much alive.
His works are in private and institutional collections all over the world including a private show at the Sackler Gallery, Smithsonian Institution.
MayankShyam (b.1987), the son of legendary Gond artist Jangarh Singh, has already created a space for himself in the world of art with his signature style of artworks. He participated in his first group exhibition Primal Force (2006) at Kolkata’s CIMA Gallery at the age of 19. Previously, his other group exhibitions include Kolkata Freedom: Sixty years after Indian Independence, CIMA Gallery, Kolkata and Museum Gallery, Mumbai (2008), In Search of Context, CIMA Gallery, Kolkata and Chemould Gallery, Mumbai (2009), Yeh Image Mahan – India meets Bharat, CIMA Gallery, Kolkata (2010) etc. His works were also included in the Indian Contemporary Art auction at Sotheby’s, New York, organised for the benefit of Kolkata Museum of Modern Art. In 2006 Mayank was conferred the state award by the Hasta ShilpaEvamHathkarghaVikas Nigam, Bhopal.
Pratap SJB Rana succumbed to the call of his heart and left a thirty-year career in the corporate sector to put brush to canvas. He brings a wonderful sensibility to his work which is influenced by his origins in Nepal and tenures across South East Asia and Sri Lanka.
Pratap’s works are contemporary yet rooted in tradition. The use of bold colours reflects his passion for life, while the layering and play of brushstrokes bring out subtle nuances and rhythm. His paintings are rich in texture and depth and have a minimal approach to the subject, which is used to anchor attention. His deliberate attempt to use simple forms and vivid backgrounds compels the viewer to reflect and then delve into the concept.
Pratap is currently represented by a number of galleries and is making his presence felt in the art world
Das is a well-known Mithila Artist, born in 1962. He graduated from M.S Universty, Baroda in 1990. He has exhibited his works at B.H.U, Devi Art Foundation, Indian Habitat Center, the Retrospective Show in San Francisco, Western Australia and the US. His works are in Museums and Institutional Collections of the Oberlin Museum USA, Ethnic Art Foundation USA, Mary C Lanius, Denver USA, and the Asian Heritage Foundation, New Delhi. His best-known works are the series on Krishna and Gujarat, followed by the series on Buddha and Yoga. He paints in the remote environs of his Ranti village in Madhubani district and does some inspirational work of teaching the young generation. He is currently working on his autobiography in Mithila style.
Satish Gupta is a multi-talented painter, sculptor, poet, writer, printmaker, skilled draftsman, muralist, designer, calligrapher and ceramicist. He won the Sanskriti award at an early stage in his career. His work, honed through a deep engagement with mysticism and Zen spirit, has been exhibited in 33 solo shows at important art galleries within the country and abroad.
Satish created a 13 feet high Surya sculpture in copper, for The Indira Gandhi International Airport in New Delhi. A monumental five-piece metal sculptured by him ranging in height from 8 to 22 feet, weighing over 10000 kilograms, and inspired by the five primal elements can be seen at the Jindal Centre in New Delhi. He has also done a 30 feet long mural for the Bengaluru International Airport.
Satish was invited to create a lithograph as part of the official Beijing Olympic Portfolio as the only Indian artist, amongst other international artists – Sandro Chia, Janis Kounellis and Mimmo Paladino. Satish Gupta’s art, known for its special meditative quality has also been exhibited at the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi.
Shaboo started as a street sign painter and has done many odd jobs. His zeal for art and learning lead him to complete an MFA from JamiaMillia University, Delhi in 2015. He regularly works with the StArt Group and has done a number of public art projects all over India. His works have been exhibited at art fairs and exhibitions.
Using the Cottage Plantation in his works runs as a vehicle for investigation, this dissertation demonstrates how fragments of information can be layered on each other to draw relationships between the past and present, self and space, memory and experience, architecture and nature. Pullagam graduated from M.S. University, Baroda in 2017.
VikramLall is an architect, author and a scholar of Aesthetics and Culture. He has lectured on architectural history, design theory and cultural studies, at institutions in the UK, Europe, Southeast Asia and India. His research on architectural history and theory of Buddhism has been published as -Architecture of the Buddhist World- presenting a path-breaking perspective into Buddhist heritage across several cultural landscapes.
As a practising architect, he has designed diverse projects ranging from urban planning to schools, housing, airports, commercial and office buildings. Several landmark buildings designed by him have got critical acclaim and have been published internationally, such as the Akshardham temple in Delhi and the Buddha Smriti Park in Patna.
Vineet Kacker is a full-time artist and part-time curator who works from his studio in Gurgaon. After graduating as an architect in 1989, he was introduced to ceramics at the Andretta Pottery, Himachal and the Golden Bridge Pottery, Pondicherry.
He worked as an artist-in-residence at the Anderson Ranch Arts Center in Colorado, and the Northern Clay Center, Minnesota, U.S.A. He later studied in a post-experience program at the University of Wales Institute, U.K. He is the recipient of the Charles Wallace Fellowship and the Fulbright grant. He is a member of the International Academy of Ceramics, Geneva.
His work is a part of several collections –notably the Museum of Contemporary Ceramics at Incheon, Korea, the Indian Ceramics Museum at Fuping, China, the Mark Rothko Art Center, Latvia and the Ariana Museum, Switzerland.