Curator Monica Jain deciphers layers of art
Curator and Director of Art Centrix Space, Monica Jain takes you through a journey of various artist’s work which is beyond the depth of art culinary
If I were to enlist the FAQs on art, then deciphering abstract art would be right on top. While as a curator and an artist running a gallery I like to steer clear of distinctions such as figurative, abstract and the like, sometimes it is unavoidable as it is the simplest way to classify art. And who am I to stand in the way of simplicity when art already seems so tough to decode ?
What appears as abstract in art isn’t necessarily so. Very often an abstract work represents an idea, a feeling, a form or figure, which has been filtered to its most frugal form. Take the works of senior artist Manish Pushkale for instance. His paintings in oils are like dark gossamer fabrics permeated with light. Upon closer examination, they are clearly a phenomenon of several superimposed strata where we find a progression - a growth if you will, of a structure built over time. Beneath the final surface, each stratum is well-aligned to construct and build towards the final overlay. The superstratum or final form, therefore, is the culmination of numerous coats of paint until that moment when the creator arrives at the critical decision of the final masterstroke!
In works where the viewer discerns ‘recognisable’ or ‘semi-recognisable forms’, the layering is a construct of narratives, and perhaps dreams, materialising visually upon the surface. Sometimes it appears as a treatment of space on an x-y plane of vertically superimposed narratives whereas, in others, it may come through in the use of a variety of mediums and materials that the artist employs to build up the surface