REN­DEZVOUS WITH ARTIST RAHUL DANGAT

“Paint­ing is like breath­ing for an artist.”

Woman's Era - - Contents - Su­man Ba­j­pai

The ab­stract paint­ing by artist Rahul Nivrutti Dangat is a pleas­ing vis­ual to the soul. Swirling lines, twisted shapes, dwin­dling light streams, vi­brant hues, an ar­ray of colour­ful pat­terns, and the path of flow­ing wa­ter, every­thing can be seen in his paint­ings.

Since his stu­dent life he is keener in ex­per­i­ment­ing with tech­niques. He tried dif­fer­ent op­tions play­ing with opaque and trans­par­ent ac­ci­den­tal ef­fects.

He has evolved with a colour pal­ette from grey­ish to warmish colour feel. There is a no­tice­able use of the cres­cent form in his work which may give vari­ables to view­ers as a moon, mask, semi-cir­cle, mod­ern ar­chi­tec­ture etc. He is not in­ter­ested in telling any sto­ries; he is nei­ther giv­ing any mes­sage to so­ci­ety. He is con­fined to him­self where he en­joys ex­plor­ing tex­tures and ac­ci­den­tal ef­fects. Ex­cerpts from an in­ter­view:

Since when have you started your art­work and what made you in­ter­ested in this field?

Since child­hood, I was good in draw­ing and paint­ing. I took part in many com­pe­ti­tions when young and usu­ally got prizes. My par­ents were very happy about this and they wanted me to be­come an art teacher. I be­long to a farmer’s fam­ily from Jun­nar Takula in Pune District. As my in­cli­na­tion was to­wards art, I too de­cided to take up arts as a ca­reer. I did my G.D. Art from Bharti Kala Ma­havidyalaya, Pune, and BFA from M.M.K. Col­lege of Vis­ual art, Gul­barga, Kar­nataka. Af­ter fin­ish­ing my ed­u­ca­tion I came to Mumbai and started paint­ing as a free­lance artist.

What kind of art do you mainly in­dulge in and why?

I am into ab­stract art as it gives me to­tal free­dom to ex­press on can­vas with lines, tex­tures and colours. I love the way the colours be­have when trans­par­ent and when opaque. Bright and warm colours bring in power and hap­pi­ness. I make use of hor­i­zon­tal and ver­ti­cal

lines to main­tain a balance. I use the cres­cent form in most of my works which brings mean­ing to a large ex­tent. There is a strong or­na­men­ta­tion in there which high­lights the com­po­si­tion. I make sure that the work looks ab­so­lutely fin­ished and ap­peal­ing to the eye.

What is ab­stract art for you?

Ab­stract art for me is a medium wherein I get to play with lines, tex­tures and colours to cre­ate a com­po­si­tion with­out any restrictions. I don’t have to fol­low rules and I pre­fer that.

What is your big­gest achieve­ment?

The big­gest achieve­ment is yet to come. When I was awarded the Manav San­ket Academy Uj­jain Sil­ver Medal in the year 2003, I felt elated. When­ever my paint­ings got a buyer, I felt my ef­forts bore fruit. The ap­pre­ci­a­tion and the kind words which I re­ceived from the au­di­ence made me happy and felt it wor­thy of my hard work. I wish for more recog­ni­tion world­wide in the name of my art.

Tell us about the strug­gles you have faced in this field.

Af­ter com­plet­ing my ed­u­ca­tion, I came to Mumbai to set up my ca­reer. At that time I re­alised that life is not as easy as I had thought it to be. I had no money for ac­com­mo­da­tion and for buy­ing ma­te­ri­als for paint­ing. I had to de­pend on my rel­a­tives for stay and food. Run­ning around gal­leries and show­ing them my work was a reg­u­lar do­ing. A paint­ing does not sell eas­ily. It takes years. I got my first break from Pradar­shak Art Gallery, Khar, Mumbai, in the year 2007-2008. I heaved a sigh of re­lief when my first paint­ing got sold. I started teach­ing chil­dren and women to en­able my­self to with­stand the Mumbai life. A reg­u­lar in­come through teach­ing was coming in. I also did other works re­lated to art like wall paint­ings and mu­rals. I couldn’t de­pend on sale of my paint­ings which would hap­pen once in a blue moon. It was the need for me to paint reg­u­larly. Paint­ing is like breath­ing for an artist, but we do re­quire reg­u­lar sales but th­ese days the mar­ket is not good and it can be very dis­ap­point­ing.

What are the colours you use mostly?

Ini­tially it was the shades of grey and white. I used to con­nect with th­ese colours the most, maybe be­cause I was from a fam­ily of farm­ers. The grey pal­ette used to con­nect me to Mother Earth. But through ex­pe­ri­ence I re­alised that peo­ple like bright colours so I had switched to warm and bright colours. Peo­ple love my paint­ings be­cause of its bright­ness. They say that it brings in pos­i­tive en­ergy and hap­pi­ness.

Which medium you like and why?

Acrylic is the medium I like as it dries quickly and it’s easy to cre­ate dif­fer­ent tex­tures with it.

How do you choose your sub­jects?

I sit in front of a blank can­vas and start by giv­ing tex­tures. From there, the ideas flow and the forms emerge. I give life to them by a very unique style of my own which I have de­vel­oped by work­ing through the years. Of late, I have started ti­tling my paint­ings.

What do you like and dis­like about the art world?

I love the art world a lot be­cause I am a mem­ber here. I have had many group shows in the past and am close to many artists from the art field and now it’s like fam­ily. I have my free­dom to work in my own space and pace.

I feel that the art mar­ket is in a bad state and sales hap­pen once in a while. An artist, dur­ing his strug­gling days, gets very lit­tle sup­port. We do not have any gov­ern­ment fa­cil­i­ties like other coun­tries have in favour of artists. Very few schol­ar­ships are of­fered to the artists in In­dia. Though the artists cat­e­gory are a very hope­ful lot, some of them suc­cumb to de­pres­sion while many oth­ers are forced to take up other jobs not con­nected to art in or­der to sur­vive.

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