HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
KATHMANDU: Sarwanam Art Gallery opened its gates to the public in a grand way on April 26 by holding an exhibition of Nepal’s grandmasters of art — Shashi Shah, Krishna Manandhar, late Indra Pradhan and Batsa Gopal Baidhya or SKIB. They first exhibited their painting as a group in year 1971.
The gallery, located in the building of Sarwanam Theatre, Kalikasthan, was venue for SKIB’s exhibition which was held after a gap of around 16 years, on the initiation of Sarwanam Theatre.
Art critic Madan Chitrakar informed, “SKIB has done the pioneer work for development of modern art in Nepal. They were the ones who showed that besides the realist form in the art, modern abstract form is also accepted in our society in those early days.”
All four artists have their own ways of expressing themselves. Late Pradhan has captured the cultural essence of Nepal in the forms of religious masks. Looking in his painting, it seems like the observer is being given an aerial view with all attention on the middle of his painting.
Baidhya expresses himself through motifs related to religion and culture. In most of his works Lord Ganesha is portrayed in an excellent way where bold colours like red, orange, green have been used. Baidhya shared, “The theme is similar but the techniques have changed.”
Shah has not stuck to his horses in one of his paintings on display. One can see an adult Buddhist nun in a painful situation with little monks lying stiff and dead symbolising today’s world where peace is dying. The texture and the bold emerging colours glue one’s view to his painting. Shah shared, “Horse symbolises power and strength. Horse sacrificed itself in ancient battles and is symbol of civilisation which attracts me to use horse in my paintings.” Nature and natural world dominate Manandhar’s work. Motifs like trees, sun and mountain are painted in a realistic way where Manandhar shared, “The art work from our generation of artists used to be of a raw type, while today a greater number of artists are working using diverse methods.” The exhibition is on till May 9.