Tête-à-tête with Art & Beyond by Kay S

A review of paintings at Chitrakala Parishad by Kay S

If you hear a voice within you say 'you cannot paint,' then by all means paint, and that voice will be silenced. - Vincent Van Gogh

The experiences of a lifetime in this amazing Universe, which in every possible way seems to be the ultimate creation at times, goads you and entices you into a labyrinth of sorts.  The same experiences dare to mesmerize you and astonish you at the same time while also allowing you to introspect into the void that you might have created within your lives by missing out on the intricacies of the beauty that is interwoven into our everyday lives.  This is something that seemed to resonate within me along with the quote of Van Gogh that I had read a long time ago as I felt seduced into a world of wonder walking into the basement gallery of Chitrakala Parishad a couple of days ago where I had gone to view the paintings of my God-daughter, Zulaikha Minnat.  She had just finished her six months’ course and this was the day when a few of her paintings along with her friends’ paintings were on display.  I had an opportunity to give a brief feedback after the inauguration function and I bravely expressed my feelings to all of them about what I felt and bared my soul to a hall full of strangers, which is quite alien to my nature so to speak, for that was the impact of their work on me and here is the blog I promised to write for them.

The paintings were amazing for an artist of a different nature and a connoisseur of all forms of art such as myself because I see art in the most uncommon things in the world.  The joy, essence, and intoxication of life is what incites and inspires me to live on attempting to enrich my life and the lives of people I meet on an everyday basis.  Each painting I saw of every artist spoke to me at different levels.  If Minnat’s painting of the ice-capped mountains reminded me of the purity of a soul that might look hard as a rock, at the same time depicting the impermanence of a frigid moment in life, her painting of a calf seemed to express through its eyes the innocence of a child that should exist in all of us along with the undoubting trust of a child irrespective of it being an animal or a human.   I unravel the emotions that some of the paintings evoked in me to the best of my knowledge as I feel it is imperative for me to express these in the most unadulterated form possible, candid and straight from the heart or rather my soul with no fringes attached.

The painting of a young child by Shwetha expressed with innocence all the endless wonder of the world through its expressive eyes, and the painting of horses with a clock by another artist reminded me of the human beings’ race against time or must I say the time warp!  A few paintings of Srini such as the serenity of the scenery depicting a lighthouse by the ocean reminded me of the saying, “All is calm before the storm.” At the same time, it also reminded that irrespective of the turbulence and undercurrents that lie deep within the ocean bed, the waves many a times depict an eerie calmness akin to the human mind that has learnt to control its emotions.  There were so many learnings and takeaways from this brief yet immersing experience that words would fail to express everything that transpired within me during those few moments of the day as I went from painting to painting absorbing all that was obvious and that which was not within them.

The scenic and picturesque green fields with the grass-clad mountains against the backdrop of cottony clouds and a blue sky by Rasmita Sahoo drew within me an emotion of a different kind, a subtle calmness and realization of the simple beauty of nature, the apathy of the human race, and its incapability to be able to save this serenity.  The multiple paintings of the Buddha by Syamala Mahesh and others resonated and connected to a deeper soul within reminding me of the calm subtle nature of Zen that can be all-encompassing yet powerful to astronomical proportions.  The painting of two young ladies seemingly oblivious to the world around watching the beauty of the sun set beyond the mountains surrounded by the beauty of delicately colorful flowers formed a picturesque dreamy sequence of a movie that played in my mind.  The sun-kissed skies and snow-clad mountains behind a gorgeous lake, another by Syamala beckoned me to go closer to it in order to absorb the beauty of the combination of God’s beautiful creation deep within me encouraging me to write a prose or a poetry for the world to see and embrace the unlimited nature of this abundance in motion.

The painting that drew my attention to my unread pile of books was the one with a mug and its reflection with an open book lying on the table reminding me to not let time pass by without paying attention to that which is mundane and that which is necessary for our intellect too.  The gorgeous iris painting in all its resplendence seemed to remind me of the beauty of human life and happiness along with the short nature of its existence which yet seems to enhance the splendor of the world around us for as long as it is blossoming just as we do in all our happiness.

The painting of a goblet with a white rose and a veil on a table was so striking in its appearance that I was forced to write a poetry on it when I reached home.  That image mirrored within my brain a message of a deep kind, one that seemed to rock my soul and I was reminded of the saying, “The cup is either just full or just empty, depending on how you choose to look at it!”  This empty goblet just reminded of the unlimited possibilities that I can fill my life with to accomplish and the clear glass reminded me of the clarity I would like in my mind and soul.

The Black and White Paradise by Anusha reminded me of the snow-clad forests amidst Scottish Pines in the forests of the West while the Sunset Scenery in all its glory evoked emotions of a maudlin kind.  The tiger lily of Shwetha reminded me of the beautiful birthday bouquet sent to me on my birthday by my children and I stood spellbound relishing that moment from months ago when I had received it.  The gorgeous angel in a sky blue frock and a hair band with a bow reminded me of my little angel daughter and all the happiness she brought into my life while the black & white painting of a baby reminded me of my son and his angelic face as a toddler.

Kaihrii’s beautiful lady in charcoal was a beautiful depiction of the gorgeousness of the Indian women in her traditional attire while Ritika’s pen art called “Magnetize” did indeed magnetize drawing me to the intricacies of its design.  Pratibha’s paintings spoke to me at length through the vibrancy of its bold colors and the subtlety that exists within them while the lion spoke at length on the fierceness yet bold expression of a mother around her children.  Hemlata Megh’s depiction of Freedom through the painting of a white lily and Reetubala's daring pictures of the painting of lions spoke volumes on the need for unchained expressions in life.  Lourdu Nathan’s amazing painting of a suckling child at the mother’s bosom evoked a feeling that cannot be put into words; the serenity of the painting, the warmth of the child in the mother’s arms, and the unquestionable bond between the mother and the child was unavoidable that pulled the strings of my heart as a mother.  The waves that rose and crashed against the rocks by Syamala were akin to the feelings that my heart, mind and soul seemed to be fighting with, as each emotion tried to claim one-upmanship over the other.

“The artist is a receptacle for emotions that come from all over the place: from the sky, from the earth, from a scrap of paper, from a passing shape, from a spider's web,” said the great Pablo Picasso and as I try to wrap up this humble review of my day at the gallery, I am beyond words of gratitude to each one of you for allowing me to experience this, to be able to trespass into the caves, caverns, and crevices of your mind and soul, and to be able to witness these beauties that unfolded on to canvas for the world to see.  I shamelessly shed a few tears of joy for that can be the only fair tribute I can pay along with these few words of praise for words are all I have to give as gratitude from the bottom of my heart.  Thank you all and more power to your pens, brushes, and hands as you fly higher to the lands of the unknown to capture the beauty of this world and beyond, the worlds that are known to mankind and that which we will never know.  Here are a few glimpses of some of the paintings for you all.




- A review by Kay S - Author of "Unfinished - A Woman's Tryst with Destiny" 


  1. It is a very nice blog written by you. Thank you very much from bottom of my heart for your appreciation of our work. Mainly It gives us more fuel and energy to do something as a new artist.
    Thanks& Regards
    Hemalata Megh

    1. Thank you so much for replying, Hemalata! I must say that it was indeed a great experience for me too. Each time I see art, my soul is enriched and I am obliged to write about it. The fact that you all evoked this response deserves my gratitude and a detailed review. Good luck to you.


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