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Building easy shapes in ceramics

india Updated: Jan 10, 2009 20:25 IST
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Ceramics as a medium of sculpture is like a child - malleable, easy and yielding.

An exhibition of contemporary architectural ceramics, "In Free Verse", which will run at the Visual Arts Gallery at the India Habitat Centre during Jan 12-15 will showcase a large body of ingenious ceramics, stoneware and pit-fired clay sculptures by a creative trio, Leena Batra, Rekha Bajpe Aggarwal and Sonia Ramaswamy Dhingra.

The sculptures reflect diversity - each a reflection of the artist's individuality. A sneak peek into the works at Dhingra's tastefully furnished residence in the capital threw up nature, figures and geometry as the sources of inspiration.

While self-taught sculptor Leena, a Russian interpreter, who has made India her home for the past 40 years, moulds human expressions in pit-baked clay and ceramics without glaze, Rekha, a former advertising professional and filmmaker, plays with poetry, shapes and bowls (as a symbol of womanhood) in her sculptures.

Sonia is influenced by nature and geometric forms. Her strength is her wooden blocks with which she stamps her ceramics and fired clay motifs that are rich in tonalities and embellishments.

Leena's human and horse heads and hands stand out for their raw finish, intensity and mobile expressions. Sonia on her part uses stoneware, glazed chips and ceramics to make natural compositions of birds, trees and flowers. Rekha uses bowls to express aspects of femininity.

"The magic of ceramics, as also its advantage over wood, bronze and metal, is that it lasts for centuries. And the colours do not fade," Leena told IANS.

For the trio, "In Free Verse" is about breaking away from tradition by not treating pottery as a potter's bread and butter. "We want to broaden our horizon and create compositions and textures like poetry in free verse," Rekha said.