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Title:        Urban Cartographers

Dates:      14 Sept to 21 October, 2017


The Six Cartographers, currently living in urban cities of Mumbai, Delhi and Kolkata, negotiate the multiplicity and constant transformation of cities in their own unique palettes.

Pankaj Kumar Chouhan, a migrant from Bihar, approaches the question of urban growth from an oblique angle with cellular forms that twist around each other, over lapping to create patterns and drawing the viewer’s gaze into an otherworldly landscape, capturing the sense of urban planning that seems clustered and shifting. The layered compositions reflect the confusion, constraining saturation and haphazardness that characterizes contemporary life by exploring city formations as evolving forms and structures.

Ashish Kushwaha, from Bilaspur, Chattisgarh, treats the surface layer of the ground as skin. His wastelands are populated by a cast of familiar elements: a goat, or bird perched on unfinished construction, an endless horizon and a variety of concrete constructs, columns and fences, completing the aura of despair. All speak of a sense of loss, loneliness of utter alienation, of being in the world yet cut off from it.

Pratik Ghaisas, from Mumbai, digs into his memories, nostalgia. In the inevitable passage of time of what was, he preserves things, immortalizing them so that they may be remembered before obsolence. He proposes new unexpected relationships and extended narrative possibilities – his connect of Cotton Candy to Wool of a shaggy Goat; kites – Manjha- Feathers - the sparseness of sparrows.

Kunal Batra, from Shimla, yearns to return from the concrete jungle of the city to a more natural habitat. In his case, his passionate engagement with the Himalayas. Mountains are perhaps like an addiction to an artist, the monumentality and the mystery, the visual harmony. Shaped by thousands of years of wind, rain, sun and snow, Urbanity has minimal presence here. Expressive lines contour the rugged terrain, mapping the topography and leading the eye through the scenery, detailing the softness of snow, the brilliance of sunlight, billowing clouds, wet pebbles rounded by the flowing waters, wandering pathways and picturesque local architecture.

Prashant Prabhu, from Mumbai, takes us to his idea of Urbania – the city of St.Petersburg, its pristine architectural heritage in near perfect balance with the burgeoning city.

Pappu Bardhan, from Kolkata, works on the fragility of nature - corroding, vibrating, silent: constantly in flux with intruding urban needs. His ability to build up his paintings through the shape and weight of lines & rhythms eloquently state his concerns.

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