The dazzle of nature has always inspired the human heart. In art or in science,
in literature or in music, in fiction or in faith, its glory is etched out in
various experiences of mankind. Be it the caveman's carving in the ancient caves,
the Pharoahs' Pyramids in the blazing deserts, the simpletons' lives in the
pastorals, the star gazers' preoccupation with the celestial, or the geneticists
and the agriculturists of today, every life on earth has taken cognizance of
nature's influence upon life. And the exhibition of paintings by Ketaki Roy
Choudhury from Kolkata and Mallikarjun C Bhagodi from Gulbarga is just one expression
of what nature means to painters.
Bhagodi's utterance in the abstract format and that of Ketaki's in expressionistic
spreads of paint narrate an exalted state of spirit which, in turn, effects
the souls of the spectators. The shifting moods and imagery of the female painter
and the constant preoccupation with an emotion of the male define the perceptions
of these two artists.
Choudhury completed her BFA from the Viswa Bharati, Shantiniketan, in 1976,
and has been trained by teachers like K G Subramanyan, Somnath Hore, Sant Kar
and others. Dwelling in the idyllic regions of Shantiniketan, it was but natural
that she took her inspiration and nuances from a region flushed with the bounties
of nature. In all the exhibitions that she has had until now, she has intelligibly
displayed her affinity with her environs. Its "majesty and mystery" here underline
a pleasure in her profession. And therefore, the passion with which she paints
The cascading waters in the mountain scape, the fine line of lightening tearing
up the gloomy dark skies or the rains in the woods, the painter's joy of being
one with nature I revealed. Her treatment of work is like that of a landscapist,
one who would diligently spends hours in the outdoors, taking references of
form, light and color. But the result is a deft fantasy that has been rendered
after many years of training.
Her glass paintings, in particular, display an amazing treatment. "I let the
paint spread by itself on the surface," says Choudhury. How then does she control
the pigment to seek any registration perceived as realism? "I am able to do
it because I feel so strongly bound to nature."
Such an inexplicable answer is far more pronounced by Bhagodi. Inspired by the
illustrious abstractionist Kendinsky, this painter ruminates upon a specific
mood that has a direct link to nature. After completing his MFA from the Gulbarga
University in 1998, he has exhibited extensively and won several state level
awards. But his engrossment with nature is a constant factor.
Basically a colorist, his works present the variables of nature. The forms in
his work, like organic portions subjected to metamorphosis, recur in every frame.
The blaze of green and the touch of warm brown and deep maroon are textured
heavily. And while Choudhury seeks inspiration from the outdoors, Bhadodi contemplates
upon the spirit of his medium. He let's his paint decide the form of nature.