Lot 14
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Signed and inscribed in Devnagari and dated '1998' (lower centre)
Serigraph and pen on paper
Print Size: 22.5 x 16 in (56.9 x 40.5 cm)
Sheet Size: 26 x 20 in (65.8 x 51 cm)

First from a limited edition of seven

JANGARH SINGH SHYAM is synonymous with Gond art, so much so, that Udayan Vajpeyi, in his essay, "From Music to Painting," proposes that the art be called Jangarh Kalam, or Jangarh style. (Sathyapal ed., Native Art of India, Thrissur: Kerala Lalithakala Akademi, 2011, p. 33) Jangarh Singh Shyam lived in the forests of Mandla until a chance encounter with the modern artist Jagdish Swaminathan in the 1980s. Swaminathan, who was leading an Indian collective on a study tour with the aimof creating a collection of tribal art in Bhopal, came across the adorned walls of Shyam's home. Upon enquiring, they met Shyam - only a teenager at the time, but with a striking style of painting. Swaminathan took Shyam on as his protege, bringinghim to Roopankar Museum in Bhopal, where he learned to transfer his art from walls to paper. He created a series of works on paper and canvas which are on display at Bharat Bhavan today.

Shyam's art was based, according to tradition, on the deities and divinities of the Gond tribe, and the animist culture of worship surrounding them. Suspended in space, he rendered them like silhouettes creating the effect of shadow puppets, with bright colours, dots and hatched lines.

The inspiration for using fine dots comes from the Gond tribe, in which the shamans go into a trance and imagine that the particles of their bodies disperse into space to join with those of spirits to form other beings.

In 2010, the Musee du quai Branly in Paris held an exhibition called Other Masters of India, which carried large works on papers by Shyam from the later 1980s and early 1990s. Shyam worked in several mediums, including drawing, silkscreen and serigraph, discovering a new approach every time. He passed away in 2001, in his early forties, under tragic circumstances in Japan. In a short-lived but exceptional career, he left behind a vibrant legacy which is carried on by the artists he trained and encouraged during his lifetime.

The present lot demonstrates Shyam's ability to take the Gond tradition into the modern age, with his skill over the equipment needed to make silkscreens and serigraphs. In this new medium, he retains the magical quality of the art that wasonce painted only on the walls of village homes.

Gond art from Madhya Pradesh is easily identified by its bright colours, fantastical creatures and exuberant plant forms. It is a combination of music, genealogy and mythology. Gond art blurs the boundaries between man, nature and the divine. The sacred inhabits all forms of life and is manifested in art. The main deity of the Gond community is Bada Dev (Great Lord) around whom many mythologies and much folklore is built. The Mahua and Saja trees are also important elements in Gond art, always inhabited by animals, birds and human forms.

Other similar works in: this auction  |  entire site

  Lot 14 of 64  

11-12 APRIL 2018

$940 - 1,250
Rs 60,000 - 80,000

Winning Bid
Rs 64,512
(Inclusive of Buyer's Premium)


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