Painting with textures 

Art Konsult’s latest exhibition ‘Germination’ features graphics from the the 60s to the 90s showcasing the dual aspect of reality

Displaying rare graphics of leading printmaker Anupam Sud, Art Konsult presents ‘Germination’. The exhibition features 22 rare graphics of Sud which she made in the 60’s to 90’s. 

Her art reflects her humanistic tendencies, reflecting on nature and people in all of its forms. The works in social and political consciousness do not reflect revolution, but they do influence a subtle intervention through thought rather than declaration. Her comprehensive understanding of past artistic traditions, cultural dynamics in the Indian context, and current events become the trigger that sets her imagination ablaze. 

“My print images can never convert into painterly images for the canvas, as the working body itself rebels. When images enter my mind, I see textures that belong either to etching or to painting. I see no easy conversions as the basic temperament of each process varies and so do ways of arriving at the end result,” says Sud. 

Anupam Sud, Mono Print, 1970

Sud as an artist does not see art as a tool for social change. It is far from benign as a plain delightful sight to attract and ease the observer, despite not being made defiantly or in intentional confrontation. She works outside the restrictive confines of ‘art for the sake of art.’ 

Her fascination with the dual aspect of reality can be seen in her interest in polarised situations. She frequently seeks to rid the human figure of all cultural characteristics – caste, creed, attire, and nationality – in order to depict a universal image, dismissing traditional iconography as inadequate for her expressive ambitions. 

Her character avoids conflict and direct response, reflecting her own personality. They are set apart from the familiar daily surroundings in self-absorption in order to completely allow the consequences of emotional and visual experience. 

Anupam Sud, Germination, Collograph, 1967

Her work is built on the foundation of drawing, which structures, measures, and modifies the space-form connection. Her lines have the appearance of being drawn with ease (on a zinc plate with a sharp instrument), outlining her characters with incredible precision. 

The enchantment of chiaroscuro (a technical term used by artists to denote contrast), with its faultless tonal gradations, then brings the nuanced, almost sculptural forms closer to the viewer’s attention. 

Long hours of physical labour, confinement in a studio surrounded by chemicals, machine presses, heavy rollers, metal plates, burners, and uncountable instruments have become a way of life for her – with no substitute. Sud is adamant about her lifelong commitment to printmaking, particularly etching, which has become second nature to her. 

The exhibition is on display at Art Konsult till October 30

(Cover: Anupam Sud, Intaglio 1969)

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