Roobina Karode seeks out Sheila Makhijani at her studio in Delhi and unearths a hoard of energetic works.
Talwar Gallery is pleased to introduce for the first time in the United States two New Delhi-based artist, Subba Ghosh and Sheila Makhijani. On exhibition is Sheila’s intimate and intricate works on paper along with various life-sized paintings on wood by Subba Ghosh.
The controlled rendering of Sheila’s seemingly chaotic lines swathed in pools of transparent color creates a world of their own. A world in which the lines walk, meet, cajole, dart, turn, swagger, and erupt; allowing them a rare escape from the fields of color. Makhijani once remarked about her lines, “They realize that maybe it is better to be a little tame and a little wild. With that they may reach a harmonious balance… and manage to create their own world. A world which has no boundaries barring them from going on the other side… a world which is full of happiness and joy… so they try, but, that is real hard, so they try again, and life goes on… maybe one day they will arrive somewhere…”
Subba Ghosh’s life-sized paintings contrast the delicate works on paper by Makhijani. The paintings feature the artist himself impersonating an assassin, day laborer, yuppie, and as a man against the wall appearing to be relieving himself. Also on view is a short film titled, “Remains of the Breath.” Ghosh’s work draws on the image as “medium,” as a repository of values constructed over time. Placing the self directly in line with the image, the artist explores the underlying social realities that manifest the present through the hold of time past. Amit Mukhopadhyay states, “The artist positions himself as the other, enters the social and invokes us to engage with the larger discourses like the production of meaning. In a way, Subba tries to reverse the ‘looking’, relocate the positions of the subjects by working the zones of visibility and invisibility and these zones are crucial for constructing representations of social realities.”