Filled with myriad creatures and subtle wisdom, Gopikrishna’s art returns in a new exhibition, and leaves a lot to the imagination
Studio near Forest, oil on canvas
After a hiatus of nine years, artist Gopikrishna is back with his new solo exhibition, titled, Anything can happen. His surrealist artworks will be on display at Art Musings in Colaba. The first chapter of the two-part exhibition, In the Land of Never-Ending Story will display his works from the past decade.
The artist, who hails from Travancore, belongs to a lineage that includes legendary personalities of Kerala like Raja Ravi Varma, and Sekhara Warrier. His artworks, however, distinguish themselves from those of his ancestors as he prefers to stray away from portraying civilised order. Yet, his art remains highly inspired by his South Indian roots. “Works at this show represent the area of travel that my mind has traversed in the past 10 years. A war has been raging from the outer world, which has tried to overthrow even the last store of belief in all things good. Human beings, as a free society, have experienced unimaginable restrictions during this period. These situations have provided great challenges that have provoked me and led me to fresh visions. These visions finally secured their eternal space in the works that one will see at this exhibition,” the artist shares about his recent creations.
King of the Last Shore, watercolour on paper
His paintings in oil and watercolours feature conflict, unpredictability and precariousness as key themes and assume the hallucinatory form of warfare. Illumination and darkness, unity and solitude — the duality of the human world is what the viewer will find upon viewing the first part of Gopikrishna’s works. The second chapter, The Everlasting Spell of Mutiny, will move these themes forward, and will be on show from October 20.
Commenting on his decade-long break, the artist says, “Mumbai has always been a welcoming space. Actually, I never thought about this ten-year interval but was working incessantly. When an interest came from the gallery to showcase my new works only then did I realise that it’s been nearly 10 years since I exhibited.” Describing art to be his primary language and words a weakness, he believes that his life is fuller when he is painting, but a shattered experience otherwise. His art, Gopikrishnan feels, has evolved over the past decade to become more precise and inward looking.
When asked about his struggles, he gets philosophical. “The way of life is a challenge for an artist who primarily creates art for himself. Nobody would ask, nobody would support. One has to face long periods of isolation. But all is balanced out, if one arrives at success with his/ her painting. Thus, my artistic life so far has been a fight for existence and meditation for creation. Contradictory, isn’t it?”
At: Art Musings, Colaba
Till: October 14; 11 am to 6.30 pm (Sundays closed)
Log on to: @artmusings99