Twenty Ten’s first rendezvous with Art

I am continually baffled by the art community of Kathmandu.

My first appointment was with Sangeeta Thapa of Siddhartha Art Gallery and I feel lucky to be one of the firsts to receive a copy of ‘In the Eye of the Storm’–a book on veteran artist Manuj Babu Mishra . I am spellbound by his drawings and don’t feel like writing about it–in fear that I may not do justice to his works. Sometimes, it is best to say little and this is one such case.

My morning started great as I held a copy of the book–which is bound to become a collector’s item as time passes by–and left the premises of Baber Mahal Revisited.

On to the next exhibition by Photo Kavya at Nepal Art Council–a group of young photographers attempting to create a niche of their own.Yes, they have great potentials but what I came upon was hardly what I expected. How many times have we seen black and white images of old doorways, grannies and grandpas sitting in the sun, of Swayambhu from low and odd angles, of Patan Durbar Square through gazillion beams and windows?

Perhaps, I should remind myself that I ought to go to every exhibition with an open mind. But having seen some of the works previously, I had the right to expect something different and of a higher standard.

Topping of the rendezvous was a painting exhibition titled ‘Global Warming An Exhibition of Paintings’ By Ratna Kaji Shakya at the same location. I got no comments for this one. You may look at his resume online:

http://archiartnepa.com.np/otherArtists/ratnaKajiShakya/ProfileRKS.jpg

The canvas was not even stretched properly. I didn’t stop at any painting because all of them looked the same–a multitude of random colors applied by palette knives. It was unfortunate that I couldn’t ask the artist what he was attempting to convey through his works because the title ‘Global Warming’ seemed to be a mere puppet for attracting viewers–the very reason why I went up the stairs to see his paintings.

*****

Art for art’s sake or otherwise…the year ahead looks promising…

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