“Humankind has not woven the web of life. We are but one thread within it. Whatever we do to the web, we do to ourselves. All things are bound together. All things connect.” — Chief Seattle
Do you ever wonder what the earth would look like if humans never existed? An idle thought perhaps since we cannot rewind time, but a great day to recommit to doing our part in preserving the immense diversity of nature and its riches on this planet. We all need reminders don’t we? A range of artworks that mark the importance of this little blue dot of a planet that we all live on is the greatest reminder of all.
Fascinated by Freudian theories and the deeply ingrained natural instincts of man, Gurukinkar Dhang’s artworks explore the realm of the unconscious mind— snatches of dreams, hidden conflicts and unspoken desires. His unique piece Civilization Now shows the coexistence of these discordant parts— civilization and evolution as humans see their reality and their unconscious instincts.
Award-winning artist Gopal Samantray is passionate about nature and its preservation having spent time in a forest ridden with famine and occupied by Naxalites. Shaping his artistic expression, his vivid and haunting artwork Caged depicts a leopard roaring in its helplessness against a backdrop of barbed wire. Indicative of the larger cause of animals displaced from their natural habitat because of human greed and encroachment, his painting is a call to action to save nature and its voiceless beings.
Self-taught artist Ranchhor Meghwal’s painting Prarthana uses the recurring motif of the pot to evoke the intimate relationship between earth and water. Skillful brushstrokes and vivid imagery of a post-apocalyptic world— parched and cracked earth, dead tree trunks stripped of any vegetation and a multitude of pots bursting through the earth remind us of the importance of water for survival. Reaching skywards in their need for water, the multitude of pots speak of the horrors of a possible future devoid of water.
Digital artist Jordan Rodgers’ Sense and Sustainability 12 explores ideas of environmental sustainability. By melding a traditional style of drawing with drawing using modern technology, his work showcases an environmental awareness of psycho-geography by giving the viewer an immersive theater installation type experience.
DB Waterman’s signature mixed media style of collage and visual storytelling comes alive in Chaos. Fascinated with weathered walls with posters, peeling paint and all kinds of things in dilapidation, the artist has fashioned the artwork out of pictures that have then been worked over. This snapshot of life in the center of one of the largest metropolitan areas in the world, New York also reminds us of the increasing need for people like you and me, living in cities to take small daily actions to reduce our impact on this earth.
Siddharth Shingade’s Trees of Thought is rooted in the colours of his native Marathwada and yet is so universal in perspective. With colours that are evocative of the heat and dust of the region, the trees are evocative of a part of India that feeds the country. At a time when everyone seems to think that cities are the lifeblood of an economy and modernization is everything, the artwork is a reminder that this stark environment is where India’s livelihood flows from— its villages.