The crossover between art and fashion has mostly been dismissed by art purists as a ‘flash in the pan’ but the trend is growing and artists are willing to move out of their comfort zone.
A show titled Devotion, Collector’s Choice, at Art Positive in Lado Sarai, will feature works by artists like Satish Gujral, Shuvaprasanna, Neeraj Goswami, Dimpy Menon, Gurdeep Singh, Ramesh Gorjala, Seema Kohli, Shipra Bhattacharya and Thota Vaikuntam and, interestingly, these artists have chosen to set their work into exquisite hand-crafted jewellery as a necklace, armband and earrings.
Curated by Sushma Bahl, the show is based on the concept of Alankar that is integral to all forms of expressive language in visual and performing arts.
Shipra Bhattacharya’s painting titled She, figures a stylised woman who is a participant and spectator of the urban drama, while Shuvaprasanna represents the urban milieu of Calcutta, and his work is about divinities, cityscapes, crows and owls.
Seema Kohli’s highly complex and detailed women-centric painting is about the feminine power while Dimpy Menon’s sculptures are realistic and delicately carved.
Satish Gujral’s bronze sculptures are renditions of his fascination with form while Neeraj Goswami’s acrylics on canvas are about ethereal forms.
These works also find their resonance in the jewellery which has been designed by the artists in styles ranging from inlay work to jali, theva and kundan, and incorporate precious and semi-precious stones, gold and diamonds.
Known for her female protagonists, Seema Kohli says ‘working on a small format for jewellery is a challenge. It’s like pushing boundaries...’
As in the pop art movements of the 60’s in the West, Indian art too is increasingly seen to embody design and fashion within its fold. Even fashion designers and their art creations are finding pride of place in museums and art exhibitions.
For instance, in a previous art show curated by Bahl, the invitation to create a ‘work of art’ was accepted by some of India’s top fashion designers. And the results were amazing. Ritu Kumar turned out a mixed media on canvas titled Shekhawati, which she says was a portrayal of Mundhawa, a place where she has spent considerable time.
Another interesting piece was the elusive designer Rajesh Pratap Singh’s installation made in welded iron scissors titled Meditating Man. In the same show, people saw a new side to other designers as well. Manish Arora’s Swarovski embellished animal-toys, Mumbai’s Shilpa Chwavan’s mannequin installation using materials from a local street market and JJ Valaya’s photographs overshadowed the designers’ garments that were also part of the show.
For most of us, art and fashion may still seem like separate worlds. Art, we believe, is a pursuit for those who have an opinion on everything. Fashion we tend to dismiss as the elitist concern of those who can afford it. But with this new identity that is being forged between art and fashion, all this is set to change.