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The art of dad-son bonding

art and culture Updated: Jun 16, 2013 01:30 IST
Aakriti Sawhney
Aakriti Sawhney
Hindustan Times
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We all know him as a friendly, youthful artist, often spotted around Delhi’s Page 3 circuit. Sanjay Bhattacharya in the last 15 years has created a name for himself in the Indian art circuit with his solo shows being held regularly at Delhi, Mumbai, London, New York, Paris and many other countries.

At home, he is a loving father to his kids and is more of a friend to them. His son, Arijoy, on the other hand, has recently embarked on the art circuit with his first solo show that was held in the Capital last year. Arijoy has worked on a series of paintings that bring the oriental and the occidental together by juxtaposing symbols of unity.

ArtistsThe father-son duo share common interests and love hanging out at Connaught Place.

Here’s more on them.

Father speaks:
Sanjay feels that being in the same profession gives both of them a lot of opportunities to discuss work and catch up with each other. He admits that ever since Arijoy joined College of Art, they both have treated each other like friends. “We share our secrets, criticise each other’s work and have even smoked together,” says Sanjay, a proud father.

He adds, “As a child, Arijoy used to do minute drawings which were very complicated and impossible for any regular child.” Commenting on whether he celebrates Father’s Day, Sanjay says, “I don’t believe in dates. Any day can be Father’s Day for me.” Both the father and son love to hang out at Connaught place and like visiting Old Delhi.

Adds Sanjay: “In fact, initially, when I came to Delhi, I did a series of works on Purana Quila, Khooni Darwaza and other historical monuments.”

Son speaks:
Arijoy love his dad’s ‘ant-like dedication’ towards his art practice. He has always addressed Sanjay as ‘Baba’ and has loved his father’s progression from being a disciplinarian towards becoming a mentor and a friend. But he confesses he has never really celebrated Father’s Day.

“My display of affection is more overt towards my mother. It’s a Freudian thing, though I’m more of Jungian,” says Arijoy. He never likes to comment on his father’s work, but believes criticism is a different thing, and says that they both do it for each other’s work, and for good.

He also shares that his dad grew up listening to the likes of Boney M, Group 87 and Manu Dibango in the 70s, and listening to music of that era helps him connect with the times his father grew up in. Also, the two often hang out at roadside dhabas to unwind.