Potholes are the canvas for this Bengaluru-based artist
Bengaluru-based artist Baadal Nanjundaswamy is painting away his monsoon blues, as most people vent their anger at the civic body by cribbing or sulking for not taking care of the giant potholes on the city’s roads.
The 37-year-old alumnus of Chamarajendra Academy of Visual Arts has managed to draw the attention of civic authorities with his ‘art installations’ in the past. And recently got a ‘princess’ to ‘kiss a frog’ using a pothole as his canvas on the outskirts of Bengaluru.
“Thankew BBMP :) @nayandahalli junction,” the artist, known for his street art and 3D paintings, posted on his Facebook page on Monday along with pictures of his art.
Nanjundaswamy, who roped in Kannada actress Sonu Gowda for his campaign, said, “Involving a celebrity in the campaign definitely helps get more attention.”
“I created this artwork on Sunday. On Monday morning, the pothole had been fixed. On previous occasions too, the civic authorities have swung into action after I highlighted such issues through my art. I think this is the most harmless way to show your displeasure,” he added.
Last year, Nanjundaswamy placed a replica of a crocodile in the middle of a pothole to highlight the poor state of roads in Bengaluru and the apathy of the civic authorities. The pothole was fixed.
And a year before that, he used an open manhole to create Yamaraj, the god of death according to the Hindu mythology. The work of art, when viewed from the top, looked as if Yamaraj was waiting to gulp down commuters.
“I am an artist and this is a small way of contributing to the betterment of society,” he said.
When asked which locality of Bengaluru will witness his next work of art, he said, “I am not sure. I am a freelancer and listen to my instinct.”
Nanjundaswamy’s campaigns are self-funded and he has created 25 art installations based on civic issues. He worked with a leading advertising agency in the past and is now an art director for Kannada movies, plays, documentaries and short films.
Appreciating the artist’s work, Tejaswini, an IT professional who lives near Silk Board said, “This is the most innovative way to protest and get the authorities to act. I wish more such artists join the cause.”
“It is a great way to highlight the common man’s plight but I don’t think it has got the civic body to act as the condition of roads remains the same,” Shweta Mishra, another Bengaluru resident, said.
So, don’t be surprised if you spot crocodiles or snakes on Bengaluru’s roads as there are nearly 529 canvases (potholes) for the artist in the city, according to a news report based on latest data available with the civic agency.