Dhimant Vyas presents ‘Natura.’ A Quirky Celebration of Life, Spirituality and NatureDecember 30, 2013
The sign board on the ground floor of Jehangir art gallery read ‘NATURA’ by Dhimant Vyas. Those from the animation world know Dhimant as a veteran artist and animator, the creative force behind the stunning claymation credits that opened the film ‘Tare Zameen Par.’
Once I entered the Hirji Jehangir art gallery I was greeted by the artist himself. Dhimant Vyas is the most humble and unassuming man you will ever meet. Guess he doesn’t need to say much because his art does all the talking.
Dawning the white walls of the Hirji Jehangir art gallery were some of the most quirky and evocative paintings that reflect Dhimant’s unique and distinct style. A style that according to him, is a result of a decade of labor and experimentation. A style whose origins are captured in a painting titled ‘The Wrong Footstep’ and another titled ‘Gasping Gills’ both of which form part of the Natura collection.
It all began years ago when Dhimant gifted the painting ‘Time Blossoms’ to a friend. The painting was much appreciated and sowed the seeds of what we see today. It is a style developed from Dhimant’s observations of life around him, from his travels and from the images and movies he’s seen over the years. Images and ideas for paintings are promptly captured in a sketchbook that he always carries with himself.
Whether it’s a painting of Shiva titled ‘Blue antidote’ or the painting titled ‘Differential equations’ or ‘Bhrama’s tear’ or the trippy “Natura family,” each painting is quirkier than the other with titles that set them apart. The influences of Rajasthani and Gujarati traditions are very evident in his work. The big eyes, the animal motifs, the sprouting trees, the imagery of conception, of the womb, of fertility all come together bursting with life on his canvas.
One can easily see the contemporary elements in paintings such as “Rolls Royce on Kodak” and “Time travel” amongst others. Certainly don’t miss the magnificent masterpiece called the “Hungry Bellyfish,” with the image of a fat man eating a fish while we can see through his beastly belly that has a sea of fish inside. Evocative and sublime, his pieces are almost three dimensional in many ways and can be best described as a quirky celebration of life, spirituality and nature.
Little wonder that Dhimant’s art is a hit with the art connoisseurs and celebrities like Aamir Khan, Shekhar Kapur, Nandita Das, Rakesh Om Prakash Mehra to mention a few. To know that Dhimant has famed fans is no surprise. In fact, four of his masterpieces have already been snapped up by Mr. Amitabh Bachchan. One of them is my personal favorite: “Natura Family.”
Each of his paintings is first hand drawn and the outline is later scanned. The print is finally ready for coloring. Each color is painted and left to dry before another color is added and each painting takes almost a week to create. Some of the most stunning paintings include an additional touch—golden foil paper embellishing the image.
When asked if he has any advice for young artists, Dhimant is more than happy to share what he’s learnt over the years. His advice: It is easy to get influenced by great works early in your career but the trick is to consciously break out of it and develop your own voice—a personal style; which in the case of Dhimant, has taken almost 10 years in the making.
You can still catch this solo exhibition of paintings till the 1st of Jan 2014. So step afoot in the Hirji Jehangir Art Gallery, for inspiration awaits you!
Hirji Jehangir Gallery, 1st Floor. Jehangir Art Gallery
M.G Road, Kala Ghoda Mumbai 400 001
For more infomation contact:
Dhimant Vyas +91 9320072760