Reflecting popular culture through art is what the first exhibition by Jugaad Studio in Gurgaon aims to do. In a departure from the elitist nature of art, this exhibition depicts the popular symbols of society in bright and kitsch colours.
“Since popular art was a movement that began in the west in 1950s, most of the pop art icons are from the west, be it Marilyn Monroe or the Beatles. We wanted to change that,” says Manish Sinha, creative director of the Studio. “Today’s youth is proud of its Indian roots and relates to role models in the country. So, we decided to paint Indian icons like Amrish Puri, Amitabh Bachchan or Dabangg’s Salman Khan in the pop art way,” says Yogesh Kumar, an artist at Jugaad Studio.
Be it the Ambassador car, Lambretta scooter or the Nano, each product or person painted is reminiscent of a particular era in India. The paintings are priced between Rs 2,000 to Rs 10,000, making them affordable. The series on Bollywood Badmash, including Kulbhushan Kharbanda, Gabbar Singh, Jeevan and Amrish Puri behind bars, is particularly interesting. Each hand-painted Badmash Behind Bars can be bought for Rs 2,000.
The studio’s creativity is not limited to the canvas alone. It is displaying a collection of 20 hand-painted canvas shoes as well. Titled Jubocks, the shoes, with paintings of Indian films like Dabbang, Delhi Belly, as well as icons like Sachin Tendulkar, are priced between Rs 2,000 to Rs 3,000. The shoes take inspiration from Bollywood, music, and sports. “Anything from T-shirts, cups, helmets and walls are our canvas. We chose shoes because they are different and not been done before, while T-shirts are quite common,” says Pradeep Kumar, another artist at Jugaad.
As for the name of the studio, Sinha says, “It coincides with our theme of reflecting Indian culture. Every problem in India has a jugaad to it.”