Appreciate, encourage, contribute – how these artists promote creativity along with social impact

In Part II of our photo essay on the exhibition ‘Kala for Vidya’, we feature more outstanding artworks and artist insights. Enjoy!
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Launched in 2014, PhotoSparks is a weekly feature from YourStory, with photographs that celebrate the spirit of creativity and innovation. In the earlier 595 posts, we featured an art festival, cartoon gallery. world music festivaltelecom expomillets fair, climate change expo, wildlife conference, startup festival, Diwali rangoli, and jazz festival.

Held recently in the Art Corridor at Taj West End in Bengaluru, the exhibition titled Kala for Vidya was a fundraising show for children’s education. Organised by the Rotary Club of Bangalore, the showcase was curated by artist-curator MG Doddamani (see Part I of our coverage here).

The artworks were priced from Rs 25,000 to Rs 6.5 lakh. See our coverage of Doddamani’s earlier Oorja (‘energy’) exhibitions held in 2020 and 2018, and the special online edition called Unbound Oorja hosted online during the pandemic.

Art for a cause

“We should all unite and help each other, especially with this show. It’s an opportunity for everyone to do their bit to help underprivileged children gain knowledge,” Doddamani explains, in a chat with YourStory.

Audiences should provide encouragement to artists and work towards making the world better-informed and tolerant. “Let us create hope with unity,” he adds. His art collective Oorja is planning another show later this year.

The artist lineup for the recent exhibition included Nita Kembhavi, Nivedita Gouda, Paresh Hazra, Prabha Harsoor, Pradeep Kumar DM, Praveen Kumar, Rama Suresh, Ramesh Terdal, Ravi Kashi, Reshma AK, and Rosh Ravindran.

Other featured artists were Sachin Jaltare, Shan Re, Shirley Mathew, Shivakumar Kesaramadu, Shraddha Rati, Spoorthi Murali, Subramaniam G, Vasudev SG, Venita Lall Vohra, Venugopal VG, and Yusuf Arakkal.

Art and creativity

“The art on your wall is the mirror of your mind. In many ways, you see the reflection of your thoughts on that canvas,” explains Musten Jiruwala, Programme Coordinator at Rotary Club of Bangalore.

“Sometimes, the art on the wall can help you tidy up your thoughts,” he adds.

“I have experimented with sand on canvas for the texture of Buddha’s face, along with radiant backgrounds which emit energy,” explains Bengaluru-based artist Nivedita Gouda. Her artworks are Buddha themed, but the message through them and the essence varies.

For example, Buddha - The Radiant depicts a form of Buddha radiating through cosmic space and time. “It describes him as the generative force behind all phenomena in the universe,” she says. Buddha’s teachings lead to awakening, compassion, unity, and hope.

Buddha - The Zen is all about how we are lost and stuck in our own maze of thoughts. We can experience freedom and move towards enlightenment only when we centre ourselves and stay grounded,” Nivedita adds.

The new normal

For two years, the pandemic disrupted the art exhibition industry, but also spurred virtual events and online workshops.

“I am happy to be doing physical exhibitions, now that the pandemic seems to have come to an end. But online exhibitions were a good means to reach many around the world, with less effort compared to physical ones,” Doddamani recalls.

He would like to keep open the option for virtual exhibitions. “But I favour physical ones since it makes a huge impact when art lovers view artwork physically. They can connect with and appreciate art better. In addition, we artists love to interact with and receive spontaneous feedback from viewers,” he adds.

With the easing of the pandemic, Nivedita sees more physical exhibitions happening. “Even though online exhibitions had their own benefits, physical exhibitions have the upper hand since artists can interact with art lovers. Art lovers can connect with art in a much more effective way,” she affirms.

Messages and meaning

Nivedita plans to explore more textures in her artworks to create depth and add value. “I want to express myself even more freely through my subject and bring forth new ideas,” Nivedita says.

“I would love to see more and more people get interested in art, learn more about valuing art, appreciate originality, and encourage artists,” she urges audiences.

“Keep working, hard work always pays. Your efforts are directly proportional to the success. Pandemic or no pandemic, never stop practising and work towards creating original works rather than imitations,” Doddamani advises aspiring artists.

“Always stick to originality. Let your art speak and connect emotionally,” Nivedita suggests.

“The true beauty of art is in beauty of the ideas. Create art that truly expresses yourself,” Nivedita signs off.

Now, what have you done today to pause in your busy schedule and find new avenues to explore your creative core?

See also the YourStory pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups,’ accessible as apps for Apple and Android devices.

Edited by Teja Lele Desai

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