Thursday, March 17, 2016

Textures and Colors of Life

Textures and Colors of Life watercolor and ink by Meera Rao
India Art Journal 2015 

A side alley with a bicycle; the buildings, walls, doors - all textured with neglect; colorful water pots waiting to be filled were hard to ignore!  Sketching, painting and photographing almost everyday when I was India, was a valuable experience. I developed a curiosity and great respect about my surroundings and learned to savor life. 

I was torn about just recording the scenes I come across,  but I also felt an urge to capture the fast disappearing lifestyle as India is hurling itself towards things more 'modern'.  I also found myself attracted to the special beauty in the simple surroundings --always colorful and full of textures. I know my sketches and paintings only give a glimpse of the country showing an extremely incomplete picture. 

Last week when I went to the preview of the opening exhibit of the brand new MET Breuer Museum in New York, I was struck by how architecture and surroundings influence an artist. Drawings and photographs by Nasreen Mohamedi, captured the geometry and abstraction from her surroundings. She saw only the beauty of lines and minimal color! 

It was also wonderful to see the 'Unfinished - thoughts left Visible.' on its third and fourth floors - unfinished paintings of artists over the past few centuries. I was excited as if I was peeking over their shoulders while they had paused and were mulling over the next brush stroke.

From the museum's website: Celebrating one of the most important artists to emerge in post-Independence India, and marking the first museum retrospective of the artist’s work in the United States, Nasreen Mohamedi examines the career of an artist whose singular and sustained engagement with abstraction adds a rich layer to the history of South Asian art and to modernism on an international level. The retrospective spans the entire career of Mohamedi (1937–1990)—from her early works in the 1960s through her late works on paper in the 1980s—exploring the conceptual complexity and visual subtlety that made her work unique for its time, and demonstrating why she is considered one of the most significant artists of her generation. Together with the thematic exhibition Unfinished: Thoughts Left Visible, Nasreen Mohamedi inaugurates The Met Breuer, which expands upon The Met’s modern and contemporary art program.

Here are Google images for Nasreen Mohamadi's art 
Check out the NYT review of Unfinished here 

Textures and Colors of Life 5.5x8" watercolor and ink on 140 lb Strathmore visual Journal

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