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Tracing the 'Primal Force', a show of abstracts and other exhibits

A show of abstracts
'Abstract expressions', a group show, is a selection of individualistic expressions at various degrees of personalized abstraction by several leading artists.

The show includes Prabhakar Kolte's abstract paintings- echoing cityscapes; Nitish Bhattacharjee's colourful impasto expressions; Samit Das- with his geometric configurations on the urban space- exploring architecture as landscape; Anjum Singh invoking the feminine in nature, and Harsha Vardhana's lyrical and redolent abstracts from the reduced palette of the artist.

Among other artists whose work feature as part of the show are Manisha Gera Baswani whose miniaturist mixed media works present a personal take on her intimate spaces. In Smriti Dixit's mixed media canvases, the artist has woven the craft tradition of sewing and weaving into contemporary expressions which is a part of a political message. Also on view are Rajendra Dhawan's emotive abstract landscapes and Paramjit Singh's impressionistic landscapes apart from Aniketa Deshpande's abstract works on canvas and Deepak Tandon's minimalised fractels in subdued delicacy also form part of the show.

The show continues at Bodhi Art, Delhi till August 14, 2006.

Tracing the 'Primal Force'
A recent show at CIMA Art Gallery, Kolkata, titled 'Primal Force', traced the influence of indigenous art practices and traditions on contemporary art. As an introductory note to the show noted, the show aimed at presenting the former as a contemporary expression, and to assert it as a continuous, surviving tradition that has had a significant influence not only on styles but more importantly on the intellectual approaches of leading, Indian contemporary artists, such as J. Swaminathan, S. H. Raza, V. S. Gaitonde, Laxma Goud to name a few.

Through the works of young contemporary artists, Devilal Patidar, Faiza Huma and Neha Vedpathak, the show was an attempt to put in perspective the contemporary art juxtaposed with symbolic narrative (traditional art). Urban, contemporary art often is an articulate political or social comment. Traditional art has only the narrative, the story or animal represented and its representation.

The show presented traditional art practices, using contemporary materials by the participating artists who have been exposed to the urban city yet the authenticity of their expression is unmistakable.

Works of Rini Dhumal and Laxman Aelay
Works of two significant contemporary artists, Rini Dhumal and Laxman Aelay, are currently being showcased at Gallery Soulfloewr, Mumbai.

Laxman Aelay, a young and talented artist held his first solo show at the Indian Council of Cultural Relations Art Gallery in Hyderabad in1999. The artist has switched over from using white, black and shades of gray, which he preferred in his paintings, to using vivid colors.

Also, his earlier large sized canvases and papers have given way to much smaller and compact works. His works oftgen depict the rural people and their poverty stricken lives that he observed closely. He paintings revolve around a rural realm, changing ethics and life in the village.

On other hand, Baroda based artist Rini Dhumal, has a strong style sense. Portraying very traditional Indian men and women, with almost a folk art interpretation but with a powerful contemporary feel. Working on paper, she uses various mediums like ink, pastels, acrylics, watercolors, and gilt.

The pictorial language of her works deal with myths and dreams - images from the real world and the subconscious with symbolic references - flying females which to the artist are associated with sexual desires, trees, fruits, etc. The female is not dormant but vibrates a latent power. For her, art with a certain degree of permanence portrays the feel and flow of life with al its colored nuances and experience.

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