Four artists and four styles, but connected to each other. The ongoing show Distant and Personal at Kerala Lalithakala Akademi art gallery in Kozhikode can be summarised so. What binds them together is art and their native place — Palakkad. “It is a journey to the depth of each soul, both inward and outward,” says Deepa Gopal, one of the artists. Others are Devan Madangarly, Devidas Varma and Joby Ravindran.
Everything — be it their subjects, styles or mediums used — is different. Deepa has used acrylic and gouache with a touch of pen and inktense to portray her female protagonists who cherish their solitude. “They enjoy detachment, solitude, and are rarely lonely. They are in a realm of their own, creating parallel worlds,” says Deepa. Her works attempt to capture the ocean of thoughts inside a woman. “Myths, dreams, people and their tales, her emotions and the unbridled feelings kindle her creative thirst. They are at once distant and personal,” adds Deepa. Some of her works are coupled with Haiku poems. Teenage boys find a place in Devan Madangarly’s majority of works. In search of themselves, they move to the core, invoking the essence of their belonging. They contemplate about dhyana in an attempt to reveal themselves through their personal experiences. “His protagonists are always solitary figures. The presence of water bodies suggests continuum — even when it is static or flowing,” explains the note. Life and death are the main subjects in his recent works and he uses the presence of crow in various stances as symbolic representation in his works done in watercolour, pen, ink and graphite.
Beauty of nature fills canvases of Devidas Varma. In his acrylic landscapes, he stands as a detached observer giving a narrative about the motherland. “His journey is to apprehend the past glory of our motherland, focusing on the splendour of Palakkad to be specific.”
Joby Ravindran travels far and wide into his past and his surroundings, both real and imaginary. He delves deep into his childhood, history and dreams, and uses different mediums such as watercolour, acrylic, gouache, charcoal and dry pastels. His recent works are inspired by his immediate surroundings, especially the groovy landscape of coconuts. His women are often meditative and reflective as he ventures into modes of relaxation.
The show is on till September 20 from 11 am to 7 pm....