Looking upon artist Tanmoy Samanta’s body of work, one experiences a sense of dislocation. You see images such as keys, clocks, scissors — objects we are familiar with but in Samanta’s work, these objects don’t conform to our understanding and are incomprehensible.
Titled, All I have Learned and Forgotten, the body of work includes three-dimensional books and gouache on rice paper paintings. “I have been brought up in a very literary environment. Both my parents were authors, so literature of all kind has been part of my upbringing. I see books as a form, both as an artefact and as a medium,” says Samanta.
The show works on the concept of learning, remembering and forgetting. It’s about removing meaning from objects. “There is both contradiction and speculation in my work. For instance, in the work titled At Dusk, there is an image of a bird and a gun, though these two can never go together, yet they seem comfortable in this painting.”
Explaining his works, titled, Cartographer’s Paradox I and II, Samanta adds, “I have been an avid reader of travelogues and, maps intrigue me. However, I wanted to question the validity of political boundaries. So, I’ve randomly cut out parts of maps and deliberately put pieces topsy-turvy to create a new world, maybe without boundaries.”
Materials such as rice paper and gouache trace his history to Shantiniketan. “Rice paper and gouache bear the stamp of Shantiniketan schooling. I started painting in oil, but realised I could not express myself in that medium. I like to work in a subtle way and realised that rice paper gave me the freedom of working in multiple layers of pigments.”
What: All I have Learned and Forgotten
On Till: January 12
Timing: 10am to 6pm
Where: Gallery Espace, 16, Community Centre, New Friends Colony
NEAREST METRO STATION: Sarita Vihar on the Violet line