Sameer Kulavoor tells you why you should give selfies a miss on your next holiday, and document the experience with a pencil or paintbrush instead
Kulavooru00c3u00a2u00c2u0080u00c2u0099s drawings from (left) Stockholm (2017) and Kochi Biennale 2016
An Instagram boomerang of a seagull soaring across a vermillion sky. A Facebook story of a hammock by the beach with multiple hashtags. The ephemeral nature of social media seems to be at odds with the very idea of travel — meant to be savoured long after you have returned home. To document his journeys across India and the world, Sameer Kulavoor chooses to pack a sketchbook in his rucksack instead.
This Saturday, the artist, whose area of work lies at the intersection of art, graphic design and contemporary illustration, will take participants on a "sketch walk" at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahahalaya, sharing with them how maintaining a sketchbook while travelling needn't be the prerogative of artists alone. The workshop will be conducted as part of the Art360° series.
"I will begin with a presentation of my work, which includes a slideshow of sketchbooks I carried to Delhi, Goa, Kelwa Beach, which is on the outskirts of Mumbai, and Copenhagen, Berlin, New York, etc. The idea is to share my art practice with the participants but to also tell them that there are no set rules for maintaining a sketchbook," informs Kulavoor. In Berlin, for instance, the artist only had a ballpoint pen at his disposal, and that's what he used to translate snippets of his experiences in the German capital onto paper. "In fact, the medium is also what makes sketchbooks different from each other," he adds. Next, Kulavoor will do a demonstration — predominantly figurative drawing in free style — in and around the museum. Finally, the attendees will do some sketching and drawing.
How is sketching a travelogue different from photographing your holiday, we ask the artist, who has close to 50 sketchbooks from his travels from the last 15 years. "Sketching while travelling comes naturally to me. It takes me back to the place in a more immersive way than a photograph can, because the latter is a direct means of documentation," says Kulavoor. "What I sketch is also what the mind filters simultaneously. It is a reflection of things, people and scenes that stood out for me more than anything else."
On: February 16, 10.45 am to 1.30 pm (for ages 14 and above)
At: Auditorium Lawns, CSMVS, Fort.
Cost: Rs 800