Art for the soul 

ByProma Chakraborty

Jul 22, 2020

Based on meditative, natural and tribal themes, the artworks of Yashwant Singh are being exhibited on the official website of the Ampas Art Gallery

Heavily influenced by Indian folk and tribal art, Yashwant Singh’s paintings feature tattoos and piercings, kitchen artifacts, weapons, masks and textiles — all of which take us to an abstract world of tribal and folk.

Titled ‘My Abstract Universe’, his art uses a visual language of shape, form, colour and line to create a composition which may exist with a degree of independence from visual references in the world.

The patterns and objects in his work are magnificently spaced. A contemporary abstract artist, Singh is heavily influenced by lines, motifs, and colours and has always sought inspiration in traditional and indigenous Indian arts.

From mundane routines, the rituality of his homeplace, travelling to the city, and current world events — the artist’s sensitivity was summoned by situations and experiences throughout life.

His personal inner thoughts and feelings find space in his creations. Some are prominent as signs or symbols others are hidden away in multiple coats of colour and calligraphy. He worked with elements from tribal community rituals he witnessed, telling stories of ancestors and tales of deities narrated in gatherings, instinctively incorporating them into his visual language.

“After completing my MFA, I worked in the studio of Bharat Bhavan for a year, where senior abstract artists also work in the studio. I have worked under their direction. Whenever I found time to visit nearby villages, I watched the working style of folk and tribal artists. During meeting and interaction with tribals and their art, I had to learn so many things and I realised my calling,” says Singh.

The unrest and instability around also evoked a spiritual yearning in him. He sought answers in meditation, and this newfound spirituality began seeping into his work. Singh found harmony in music and painting. His works transmuted from more defined forms to abstraction, as part of his natural artistic journey.

Singh’s work comprises non-terrestrial script, geometrical forms, meditational third eyes, nature elements, and colours used layer by layer overlapping and mingling. Drawing and layering become a way of expressing an emotion visually for him.

“I really enjoy the meditative process. Coats of colour, repetition of motifs, I gradually started moving towards classical music and spirituality and the definitive figures started to disappear off the paintings,” he adds.

The exhibition can be viewed at the official website of Ampas Art Gallery till September 10