Monday, May 25, 2009

INNERSCAPES : An Exploration of the Eternal.

Innerscapes a series of abstract works by Akshay Ameria, is to be displayed at Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai from 18th to 24th March 2009. The new series is almost a sequel to his earlier works and reflects his insatiable exploration of the eternal. Art has been for Akshay a medium of exploration of the inner world- a journey of eight years which has culminated into a unique style of his own. His dark canvases in acrylic leave a deep impression on the viewer. Thematically related to his earlier works these recent paintings mark a progressive growth in his style. The most visible is the expanse of the canvas, which is symbolically the vastness of the space and has no boundaries or limits. While his earlier paintings were black etched on white, now it is the reverse a flash of light scratched with pastels or splashes of colour against a dark background. Perhaps the tremulous, layered transparence is the manifestation of the inner consciousness. The addition of colours proves his persistence at experimentation on the canvas, this time more creatively than ever before. But the play of dark and light is distinctly akin to the 'Voices of Eternity' series.

His works are shorn of all artifice, as decapitalized as a cummings' poem. They surprise you by their apparent simplicity - a foregrounded white flash, tinged with streaks and blobs of colour. And yet, they arrest you and compel you to gaze longer and delve into their pied beauty. Hopkins' words inostensibly come to mind, ' All things counter, original, spare, strange; Whatever is fickle, freckled (who knows how?) With swift, slow; sweet, sour; adazzle, dim;…' as if his paintings were a pictorial rendering of the poet's words- a transcription by brush and paint on a canvas. As you look, you perceive the deeper layers and meanings and are face to face with the mysterious elements that constitute the universe. The contrast of the dark and light; the forms in formlessness; the motion suggested by lines against a static darkness; the hint of colours in ponderous white, black and grey stretch; and the sense of space, all set you on a journey, an exploration. You realize the truth of Willem de Kooning's words, ' at some point we've got to stop asking ourselves what is the meaning of everything, may be it's not so important what it means. It's probably more important what the sense of it is….they are two very basic and different things.'

His recent works exude a meditative stillness and calm. Looking at them you become aware of a deep silence. And this silence has been best explained by Eckhart Tolle, 'When you become aware of silence, immediately there is that state of inner still alertness. You are present. You have stepped out of thousands of years of collective human conditioning'. It is as if the spirit of 'Stillness Speaks' was breathed into these canvases. One begins to wonder how two souls so far apart, working in two entirely different environments, using different mediums and tools could be so close in their thoughts and perception. It is no mere coincidence that Eckhart Tolle writes, 'all true artists, whether they know it or not, create … from inner stillness,' …and Akshay actually does it.

- Prateeksha

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