A member of the Faculty of Fine Art, Vishakapatnam, V Ramesh has taught generations of artists for nearly three decades, compiling an impressive body of original paintings in the process. He exhibits his work at the NGMA courtesy Gallery Threshold, New Delhi till March 25.
The collection carries highlights of his work from the past decade notably in towering 15-feet high canvases featuring in-depth reflections on the devotional poetry of select Bhakti saints. As the artist tells us, it is “meant to reflect a personal journey over time”.
Inspired by writings from specific poems, Ramesh often incorporates the image of the poet within the works, giving them a multi-dimensional depth. “It is often a painfully slow process, but then I have all the time in the world,” he laughs.
The devotional writing of four women poets have been his main muses and they appear in his works in different forms — as garlands used in worship, as falling jasmine petals during a ritual, or even as rebellious female mystics who could handle both ridicule and praise with relative ease. While the subject of his art may be serious, his paintings carry an appealing aesthetic quality, layered with brush strokes and softly merging colours – a very solid attempt to express mystical poetry through art. “They are all inspired by works that moved me, that I translated into my own language of the brush,” says the first artist to be given the honour of a solo exhibiton at the National Gallery of Modern Art.
Rs 7 lakh upwards. At Palace Road. Details: 22342338
— Susanna Chandy