Artist Boshudhara Mukherjee, who is exhibiting her second solo exhibition, The Dangling Conversation, prefers to weave her own canvas. It was the need to find something that reflected a part of her, she says. One afternoon, as a student, she was experimenting with no specific idea in mind, when the canvas stripes she had cut, inspired her to weave them back together. “In college, we were encouraged to find a space we identified with most. The canvas is too passive a medium for me. I needed something more interactive,” says Mukherjee, who took three months each to finish the seven canvases that are on display.
The art works are approximately six-ft to 15 ft in height. Mukherjee, who studied painting at the Maharaja Sayajirao University in Baroda and has been exhibiting actively since her graduation in 2008, painted the canvas, cut and wove it, sometimes more than once creating and recreating the patterns, distorting them to create new, unexpected forms.
Mukherjee draws inspiration from a pool of varied and eclectic sources: the delicate lines of a miniature painting, abstract expressionism, geometric patterns of neo-plasticism, repetitive patterns of architectural screens, as well as her grandmother’s sarees. She uses a variety of media in her works, most of these common materials of everyday use — plastic, paper, tapes, and cloth. These are either layered onto the canvas or stripped and woven into the work. The objective is to recycle the material, strip it of old connotations and render a new meaning.
“One must keep in mind the process behind the creation — the destruction without which its creation would have not been possible” she explains. She therefore believes that her art practice is much like life — one has to pick up the pieces, rebuild and move on but the scars remain.”
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