Masterful storytelling on canvas | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, May 12, 2019 / LAST MODIFIED: 10:21 AM, May 12, 2019

Masterful storytelling on canvas

Renowned artist Anukul Chandra Mojumder traces his roots to a very remote area of Bagherhat. An in-depth observation of rural Bengal, simple harmonic patterns, pastoral motifs, a tranquil atmosphere, swimming, fishing or roaming around the village were regular mental sceneries from his childhood. Over the years, he has carved a niche in the realm of art. His paintings are characterised by symbolic images, experimentations and creative outlooks. He had a fascination for painting from his early age. His uncle helped him to pursue a career in painting. His current artworks dwell on the subject of relationship between humans and nature. He puts his subjective emotions into his paintings. The essence of his paintings is the expression of inner meaning.

About his ongoing solo exhibition titled, Dawn of Black at Edge Gallery, Gulshan 2, art connoisseur and critic Salahdin Irshad Imam wrote in the catalogue: The blacks of the artist’s line take on a softer, grandeur quality as he masterfully transfers the charcoal on the canvas. At the same time pulsating luminosity of colour, the classic medium of abstract art is rendered in partly translucent juxtaposition. The figurative is tempered with the abstract in perfect harmony. Anukul’s stories echo like haikus, the Japanese art of capturing profundity in a minimalistic way, bringing out the essence of the moment – as intense as it is brief.     

Master painters like Picasso, Moore and Rodin have been preoccupied with the human form. This artist too, plays with limbs, torso, hips and faces as if they were integral parts of some romantic dream, where the human anatomy floats though space and time.

Floating boats, flowing rivers and rain are included in his visualisation of man and nature. He longs for the wet grass and the chirping of birds, bringing in waves of lyricism to his dancing images. His depiction of figures face upwards, seemingly to flee for the eternity.

At times, he smudges the paints and the charcoal lines with his fingers, for a lyrical effect. Sometimes, he drapes his images in clouds of cobalt blue and vermilion, suggesting that these are the colours of dream sequences. Anukul portrays from his memories mingling with distant romanticism and timeless heritage of art, where he belongs. The voluptuous thighs, breasts, hips, floating hair and fingers curling like petals, are stylised shapes from his memories of gods and goddesses.

The figure drawings of SM Sultan and Zainul Abedin have influenced him greatly. So have the works of Rafiqun Nabi and Quayyum Chowdhury, who were his teachers. Matisse and Gauguin’s exotic paintings and their raw, vibrant colours are also invoked through his work. The impact of pata-chitra and lakkhishara, along with the stylisation of Oriental Art, influence his work of bringing in nebulous female forms.

The exhibition is open from 10 am to 8 pm till May 18; and from 10 am to 7 pm until June1. 

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