Harvest 2018

Moving into the Future

Sep 02, 2018   |   New Delhi

Over the years, Harvest has been reflecting the trends in our contemporary art as they develop. But we have always ensured that we exhibit a core group of masters who are like the many roots of a tree that now blooms with many different flowers on its branches. Each of these has its own fragrance, shape and colour. This year too we have works of M.F. Husain, S.H. Raza, F.N. Souza, Satish Gujral, Krishen Khanna, Ram Kumar, K.S. Kulkarni, K.G. Subramanian, Sakti Burman, Bhupen Khakhar, Lalu Prasad Shaw, Badri Narayan, Prabhakar Kolte, Arpana Caur and T. Vaikuntam, among those who represent our various modernist traditions which draw inspiration from largely expressionist sources as well as our narrative tradition with its fanciful imagery drawn from our mythological treasures. Our nonfigurative art is represented by Zarina Hashmi, Shobha Broota, Achuthan Kuddalur, Mona Rai, Faiza Huma, S. Harsha, S. Balasubramaniam, Jnanesh Sekhar Ray, Sweety Joshi, Vineeta Gupta, Manish Pushkale, Pandit Khairnar, S. Jigdung, Saba Hasan, Anu Malhotra, Aiyana Gunjan and Heerina Misra among others who draw their inspiration from not only the influence of the US “abstractionists” but also a minimalistic representation of our landscape art, tantric symbolism and what can be called flow and action painting. Our romantic painters like Sanjay Bhattacharyya, Paresh Maity, Bratin Khan, Bikash Poddar, Meena Sansanwal, Maya Burman, Maredu Raman phase into the works of our younger artists like Farhad Husain, Joydip Sen Gupta and Roy Thomas to name only a few. The sharp satire of our present day life is reflected in many of these. As usual we have the works inspired by our tribal art which is represented by Jayasri Burman, Ramesh Gorjala, Seema Kohli, Chhotu Lal, Baua Devi, Dhavat Singh, Kalam Patua, as well as the young Kangra artists who are reviving our Pahari painting. The notable trend is that they attempt to break away from the limitations of subjects in our traditional art and have evolved their new expression in terms of our contemporary framework. Among the sculptors too we have the works of Laxma Goud, Venkat Bothsa, G. Reghu, Sachindra Nath Jha, Tyeba Begum Lipi, Valay Shende and Sheela Chamaria. Among our younger artists, Amin ul Islam Ashik from Bangladesh has sculpted a very trenchant image of the Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump talks, which reflects a broad range of styles from our painted temple sculptures to modernist expressionism. This year we also have works like those of Michelle Poonawalla which are digital superimpositions reflecting our modern technology. So once more our art reflects both its essential core and periphery reflecting the future we are about to move into. Suneet Chopra Art Critic, Writer