Epitomising platonic love
As history has it, the purest and selfless form of love is symbolic to the love that was there between Radha and Krishna, which transcends all kinds of love relationships that have been formed till date. A solo exhibition titled ‘Empowering Love’, which is devoted to the romantic (divine) love of Radha and Krishna, by Ritu Gupta, will be held from March 15 - 19 in the national Capital.
The artworks interpret Krishna’s youthful dalliances with the gopis and the loving interplay between God and the human soul. The allegorical love of Radha has found expressions in these works of Ritu, where the reference is implicit and subtle. Radha’s rapturous love for Krishna and their relationship is interpreted as the quest for union with the divine.
The fine viewer would be able to appreciate the work where the artist shows a certain mastery over the understanding of the human body in composition and design terms. Also, her urge to play takes over as she focuses on backgrounds, detailing and decorative motifs. There will be 11 artworks which will be on display at the Convention Foyer of India Habitat Centre.
With the use of vibrant colours and fine detailing, the artist does away with traditional iconography and instead chooses to focus on the mood of lovers. The artist says, “This series has very close references to the late Guler and Kangra School of art but not so much in treatment of foliage, moonlight and the romantic mood. I have made this traditional narrative of my own.”
With these works one can see Ritu’s journey as an artist. She has begun to settle down into an understanding of human form which is heavily inspired by the supple slenderness seen in the medieval Indian styles of art ranging from Chola bronzes to Kangra paintings. However, a key feature to note is that the artist does not seem to be making a school or style centric adaptation. Instead, one is reminded of the early 20th century Bengal revivalists and their understanding of an authentic (traditional) Indian form in terms of being soft, supple and feminine as against the hard(er) masculine European understanding of human body.
Beginning as a self-taught artist, Ritu’s journey into the world of art is visible in her passion to paint, decorate, explore and express. Her paintings are influenced by traditional art forms and culture in a style that is very much of her own. Though the works are her medium to explore and understand Indian tradition, the intimate viewer can identify with the artists understanding of childhood, masculinity, femininity, union and desire.
Ritu creates gorgeous, traditional, devotional art with fine intricately detailed, multi-layered works filled with rich colors and dream-like background with her signature texture and imagery. In her series of ‘Divine Goddess’, with the use of bright colours coupled with the wonderful freedom of brushstrokes and spontaneity in forms, she has created works that are truly magical, inspiring, spiritual and alluring. Her artworks are like a visual treat with minute detailing of the clothes, jewelry, backgrounds and birds. Ritu Gupta’s paintings are identified by a trademark which is registered as ‘Shades of India’.