The power of the female form gets depicted in art
To present an ode to the indomitable spirit of women, 17 female artists have come together to showcase works that highlight the contribution of women to the world of art. At an ongoing exhibition titled Narayani, organised by the Lalit Kala Akademi and the French Institute in India, there are artworks that celebrate ‘generation equality’.
Artists participating in the show are from both India and abroad, namely Aishwarya Sultania (India), Arpana Caur (India), Carol Diver (Ireland), Dimple B Shah (India), Gayatri Apte (India), Germander Speedwell (UK), Gauri Vemula (India), Iva Saric (Croatia), Kanchan Chander (India), Kavita Nayar (India), Laura Napier (USA), Marija Lopac (Croatia), Noriko Matsubara (Japan), Rathi Devi (India), Rini Dhumal (India), Stephanie Arpels (France), Vasudha Thozure (India).
“India takes a back seat when we talk about ‘feminism’ and ‘equality’,” says Gayatri Mathur, curator of the exhibition, adding, “In our sector too, as artists we aren’t treated at par. In this exhibition, I wanted to showcase the brilliance of women artists with a focus on their journey and craft, and not gender. The name of the exhibition is an ode to the goddess Narayani, who is the amalgamation of – Mahalaxmi, Durga and Saraswati – the three goddesses who are embodiment of wealth, strength and knowledge. These aspects, every woman has in herself, and this was the driving force behind the collaborative effort.”
Delhi-based artist Kanchan Chander, whose work featuring a torso of a woman is displayed at the show, says she was enamoured by the beauty of the Tribhanga pose. “My artwork conveys everything about womanhood including her fertility and her sensuousness. I didn’t want to identify the woman, or put a head and arms on the figure. In our sculptures, the Tribhanga pose is the epitome of grace of an Indian woman, and that was the inspiration behind the painting, which I have done on the canvas using acrylic, oil and metallic leaf.”
Another participating artist, Aishwarya Sultania, from Gandhinagar, has a painting featuring the Gayatri mantra on Nandi the sacred bull and God Shiva’s vahan. She has used ink and mirrors, a self-developed technique, for her work, and explains, “The mantra is very auspicious for us, and the depiction of it on Nandi is a culmination of the inspiration from various gods and goddesses, a form of Shakti.”
Catch It Live
What: Narayani Where: Galerie Romain Rolland, Alliance Française, 72, Lodhi Estate On till: April 16 Timing: 11am to 6pm Nearest Metro Station: Jor Bagh on Yellow Line and JLN Stadium on Violet Line
Author tweets @bhagat_mallika