There is no denying that India, even in these technologically advanced times, has been embracing its traditions to the core. Mythology is a constant source of inspiration, alluring artistes to bring out the best contemporary depictions. The form of expression may vary, but the epics and Puranas have come to the forefront time and again on various mediums.
Artist Rayana Giridhar Gowd, originally from the Guntur district of Andhra Pradesh, with his recent art exhibition Dashavatara — Dialectics of Tradition at Kalakriti Art Gallery, has brought forward the nuances of human existence through the 10 avatars of Vishnu. Taking inspiration from the Matsyaavataram to Kalkiavataram, all the avatars are beautifully depicted in Giridhar’s artworks.
Talking about his constant fascination with the epics and Puranas, he says, “My father used to read me stories from these epics when I was a kid. Since then, I have been attracted to the heroic tales. I have always approached these legends not as religious or superstitious stories, but as priceless epics, a treasure house of wisdom and as unique examples of the essence of life.”
The 23 artworks on display showcase Lord Vishnu in different sizes as well — right from the 5 feet by 4 feet canvas to miniature paintings with natural pigments. Giridhar feels that every avatar has an emotional connect with us. “I usually do miniature works, but for Dashavataram, I wanted to make them on a bigger canvas. I used my imagination to showcase every minute change and evolution with the right expression,” he says. Interestingly, the body structures of all his characters have an uncanny similarity with the Lepakshi style of work.
Elaborating on his work at the gallery, Giridhar says, “These artworks have been selected from my various series that I have done over a period of two years. I have selected the best of artworks that goes with the theme of Dashavatara in both miniatures and canvas. The usage of colour is according to the mood of the artwork. Like for Kalki avataram, I have used bright orange and golden colour.”
Undoubtedly, Giridhar’s work beautifully blends the imaginary with reality, along with the right measure of one’s traditions and culture....