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Traditional, Modern & Contemporary Indian Art Traditional, Modern & Contemporary Indian Art K G SUBRAMANYAN (1924 - 2016)
Acquired directly from the artist
K G Subramanyan was a prodigal talent with a career spanning some sixty years; born in 1924 he was awarded the Padma Vibhushan in 2012, the Padma Bhushan in 2006 and the Padma Shri in 1975. His oeuvre includes works that stem from the ideal that form Indian traditions. They display many moods, from the more sombre to critical to mirthful, always intensely engaging. Observing Indian art he said, "Folk art has a certain kind of mobility that more structured and sophisticated systems of expression do not. But in our art tradition they often live close together and interact and become part of a larger fluid language system" - K G Subramanyan (as quoted in an article for Scroll. in on 30th June 2016).
His hybrid style combined Cubist principles with those of Indian folk art and his characteristic is a distinctive gridwork. A great lover of Indian art, he would fold these traditions into his own paintings, making his visual language an amalgamation of modernism that sprang from the traditional. His work was peopled with subjects and creatures that could be from cultures ranging from India to Egypt to China. Versatility was his hallmark and he also worked with terracotta and glass.
Women and the female form were the site of much of K G Subramanyan's creative explorations. Here, the work in gouache dated 2010, features hallmarks that are instantly recognizable as part of his distinctive artistic voice; patterns that create what seems like a fully realized world on the canvas. He creates distortions that lend the piece dynamism and movement. As he succinctly put it, "I am by nature a fabulist. I transform images, change their character, make them float, fly, perform, tell a visual story. To that extent my pictures are playful and spontaneous" - K G Subramanyan (as quoted in an article for Scroll.in on 30th June 2016). All that and more is apparent in this work.