I don’t have any particular favourite. There are about three representations of mother that I really like. Fra Angelico’s Madonna and Child at the Uffizi in Florence and Alessandro Bottice l l i ’ s The Madonna and Child with an Angel also at the Uffizi.
My instinctive reaction, however, was Husain saab’s Mothe Teresa and then I was reminded of these wonderful masterpiece by the greats of Western art.
Jehangir Jani M J Enas’ life-size sculpture titled Mother Courage I think i very poignant. It depicts a burdened old lady who is pulling a cart. It depicts the mother as someone who provides unconditional love. Love for her is not a duty and for the same reason she does not suffer.
Anjana Mehra I can’t think of any particular work. But in my own work there was phase… when I was in college.. a friend of mine committed suicide. For decade after that I painted only in black and white. But while I wa pregnant with my son Karan, I followed my pregnancy very closely.
The whole process of another body growing in me. It was an experience. Then one day I felt a spark of life in me and I took up colour again.
It would have to be my painting in which I portrayed my wife and my son. Titled End is the Origin, the painting gets its name from a Rabindranath Tagore play.
I think the womb in the beginning and the end of life and that was playing on my mind when I titled the painting.
There is a painting by Egon Schiele titled Dead Mother. It is rather morbid painting. I am not suggesting that the painting is representative of Mother’s Day but whenever I think of a mother and a child relationship, for some reason I remember it. On first viewing sallow figures appear to be sick or dying but when you look at it closely, you realise that it is almost womblike. I think it is a very intimate portrait.
(As told to Gitanjali Dang)