Call to save mankind and nature
A weeklong joint exhibition of artists is being held at Shilpangan from August 1. The display includes the paintings of Jamal Ahmed, Mohammad Yunus, Biren Shome, Ranjit Das, Maksudul Ahsan, Javed Jalil and others. Special attractions are the works of Monirul Islam and Farida Zaman. Muted and dignified, the works bring in various subjects and styles, all of which deal with life in Bangladesh.
In Biren Shome's "Parrot seller" one encounters an overwhelming use of green to bring out the artist's love for nature. The bird seller, the red billed parrots and the background behind are all awash with emerald. This also brings out Biren's concern for the preservation of nature. In another painting one sees a woman freeing parrots from their cages. The homely village woman in her orange sari is just as attractive as the birds she is giving a new lease of life in the open. The subjects are done with simple, flat strokes and conventional acrylic colours on canvas.
Maksudul Ahsan's mixed media on paper uses ink, acrylic colours and screen print hues to introduce his "Black" series. His non-figurative work stresses home the fact that today we are surrounded by socio political problems all over the world. "We have little care for the next generation, so mindless are our destructive activities," says Maksud. His presentation of the aggressive black bull in serigraphy, done with line work and chalk, is also a representation of harmful, aggressive elements working around us. A number of black, grey and beige geometrical forms that remind us of rusting iron and burnt clay, help present his theme of destruction and despair. Even the single green leaf included in the composition of a painting has been eaten away by insects.
Chandra Shekhar brings in ruination of the beauty of the past. The artist shows how the centuries old Choto Kattra in Old Dhaka is in shambles today. The ancient arches, pillars and windows are being marred by high-rise buildings at the back and harum-scarum rush of commerce in front. Symbols of horses are carefully included in the composition.
Ranjit Das' "Man and horse" series depicts the strength and beauty of nature, where the powerful horse and pretty woman share the canvas space, one blending into another. A portrait of a female figure is brought in grey, while the face of a horse is suggested in the distance. Horizontal, vertical and diagonal lines are brought into play. Intricate calligraphic writings are also included. In two other paintings, Ranjit glorifies the land and water masses of our chars. Dilapidated houses and moored boats are included in the composition.
Monirul Islam's abstractions bring in the landscapes of Chandpur. Monir has played with space, using lines, rectangles, circles, curls and dots to present the purity of nature around us. Eggshells and stone dust have been included too to lend variation in texture.
Farida Zaman too works on her memories of the untouched beauty of harmony and peace of the Bangladeshi countryside. Her preoccupation with the women and their love for birds are brought in.
Equally mind-boggling and fascinating are the figures and line work by Javed Jalil. "I basically focus on lines," says Javed," Here I wanted to express the mechanical aspects of life. I introduce figures which belong to the 21st century with its futuristic aspect.”