Chennai sees veteran artist C Douglas’ works on show after greater than 10 years

Dismembered physique elements, fragmented textual content and layers of mediums that dominate the work of veteran artist C Douglas are on show after greater than a decade

Dismembered physique elements, fragmented textual content and layers of mediums that dominate the work of veteran artist C Douglas are on show after greater than a decade

In curator Ashvin Rajagopalan’s phrases: C Douglas is the “quintessential artist”. 

Unpredictable, chaotic and layered, his artwork is however a mirrored image of the individual he’s. And so, it comes as no shock that he refused to talk for this piece. His canvases, nonetheless, converse volumes. Displayed at Gallery Veda, with 4 ceramic companions at Ashvita’s Gallery, the collaborative present is a window into Douglas’ world — a world, although famed, that’s not often on show. It has been greater than a decade since Chennai noticed a solo present of the veteran’s work.  


Artist C Douglas

Artist C Douglas
| Picture Credit score: KUMAR SS

It’s no information that dismembered physique elements, fragmented textual content and layers of mediums dominate his work: the vacuum, hollowness or void, that lie within us all, are characters in his inventive expression. And so, although he revels in abstraction, Douglas’ work connects one to the innermost truths of self. A wierd, weird sense of relatability is fast to scrub over the viewers.

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As an example, an untitled work from the ‘90s, characterised by totally different shades of black, grey and blue is crowded with acquainted motifs (assume: ladders, speech bubbles, angular faces, skeletal arms, all thrown in collectively). It’s discomforting. Maybe, that’s the level. A round canvas displayed at Gallery Veda takes on a soothing tone, however solely when it comes to colours. Titled ‘The fountain and the chook track’, the closely textured work is fraught with mutilated elements of maybe, a model or stick-like determine.     

One of Douglas’ works

One among Douglas’ works
| Picture Credit score: particular association

Whereas Gallery Veda homes 33 work of his, the narrative travels additional to provide a glimpse into his work with 4 of his ceramic sculptures being showcased at Ashvita’s. These works have been achieved in an artist-in-residency programme at Oisterwijk, the Netherlands, in 1994, together with Indian modern artist Bhupen Khakhar.

And Douglas doesn’t fail to reference himself in his sculptures as nicely. The similarities are unmissable. “Each Bhupen and Douglas usually are not sculptors, however they have been made to make use of the medium so you possibly can see that he’s deciphering his works onto a three-dimensional medium. There could also be just one or two extra sculptures.” A geometrical oil on canvas from 1981, one among Douglas’ earlier works, on show additionally reveals a time when he was experimenting with textures. 

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Ashvin tries to attract an image of Douglas’ type of working that one can solely describe as ‘within the second’. “He doesn’t use a historically stretched canvas. He makes use of the canvas, sticks paper on it and crumples the paper, to provide this [textural] impact. After which in fact, he brings in textual content. Then there may be sand, tea, charcoal, and if he’s smoking, cigarette ash…” 

The present is on until October 1 at Gallery Veda, Nungambakkam and October 10 at Ashvita’s Gallery, Radhakrishnan Salai.

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