Art exists in a rose and thorn imbalance of aesthetics and obscurity today. But in our materialistic world are art courses a viable option?Faustina Johnson email@example.com
Ingeniously fashioned to resemble an archaic fortress, the Department of Fine Arts, Hyderabad Central University is a cultural collision from the outside. Enter, and you will not be disappointed. Strewn with artistic masterpieces, the ambience is a tasteful experience in pleasure. The studio, site of the Fine Arts exhibition held recently, captivates with stupefying craftsmanship, two years of the seniors’ lives, chronicled in color. Outside the nourishing walls of the University, the students seem doomed to a hard life.
“It is definitely tough to get into the contemporary art scene”, says Sitaram Swain, a first year MFA student at HCU. Looking at his relaxed frame, haloed by light and artistry in the studio, one cannot but wonder what enticed him to heed art’s perilous calling. “It had always been my passion from childhood. When I finished my schooling, I enrolled in J J School Of Arts, Mumbai.” Did he receive any support from family and friends? “Loads of it”, he says. Well, he is just one in very few who do.
Art exists in a rose and thorn imbalance of aesthetics and obscurity today. A well connected Godfather seems indispensable to establish. Parents can seldom ingest the idea of art as a career. Most offer only ardent arguments on developing a professionally viable back up. If Malcolm Gladwell was right, any individual would need at least ten thousand hours of practice in his field to attain dexterity. Where would that leave the part time artist?
Who or what is to blame? Even when the art is commendable, the audience is unaware of its excellence. Art exhibitions are merely that- the pieces on display hold no financial purport. They merely flash the artist’s presence. Few consider paintings investment worthy.
Would this mean that the people alone are responsible for the undiscovered talent spending desolate hours sketching the random customer for subsistence? “Our socialist economy does not facilitate creativity”, says Adhithya Srinivas, who paints as a hobby. Art remains ignored in our academic curriculum, where it is no more than an easy A. We were never exposed to it in a way that would develop significant taste. This gap is evident when you consider the statistics – only four fine art schools in the whole of Hyderabad. The psychological consequences go deeper. A highly talented artist often chooses to remain in the closet, so to say, simply because it never crossed their mind to take it up seriously. The subjective nature of their work sometimes often renders it impenetrably ambiguous and therefore irrelevant.
However, for many,goes deeper. For the Indian LGBT community, it is nothing short of salvation. In a country where queer expression in is largely absent, it looks to art for vent and reflection. The AKS Queer Art exhibition held at Anveshi Research Centre for Women’s Studies, Hyderabad, on 17th July, 2011 saw Hyderabad’s gay populace mingle in the comfortable opulence of seeing representations of their lives around them.
Tanmay Santi, art professor at HCU is privileged to be associated with the rich legacy. When questioned about what made him choose art as a career, “I can’t imagine any other life”, he smiles. As the discussion turns to the agony awaiting budding artists,Tanmay expresses discordant views, asserting that nothing comes without a struggle, and art is no different. According to the painter, positivism, ambition, creativity would suffice to concoct success. We can only hope he is right.
Category: Art & Design