The Broota Blow-up

Rameshwar Broota likes to work on large canvases. “I like the action,” says the 70-year-old artist, swinging an imaginary brush in the air. “When I scrape paint for the details, greater-than-lifesize gets more accuracy... When you magnify, so many things are added and subtracted.”

This ‘addition and subtraction’ continues in his photography, too. In this case, his canvas is a 32-inch MacPro screen. Broota takes an image or a set of images at very high resolutions, and then spends night after night working with them on the Photoshop software — altering, superimposing, enhancing — to get the composition he wants. And he prints them at sizes of at least 40”x60” — monumental for photos.

Why not put out ‘un-doctored’ images? Broota, who started photographing in his teens with his elder brother’s camera, says, “I used to conduct dark-room experiments — double or triple exposure, superimposing negatives, ‘burning’ portions of the image... The idea was that an artist should do something ‘different’.”

But Broota, artistic director at Triveni Kala Sangam since 1967, has been shy in showing his photographs. The 15-odd images in the coming show comprise what would be his second exhibition of photographs. Maybe less is more.

@ Shridharani Gallery, Triveni Kala Sangam, February 12 to 21, and at Vadehra Art Gallery, Defence Colony, February 24 to March 3. Call 24622545

 

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