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Artist of the Day | Ajay Desai

Ajay Desai



Acrylic on canvas

59.5 x 93 in


"We live in a difficult time, with no grand declarations to make as life gets more and more fragmented and all our utopias disintegrate. Art also reflects this state of affairs." Ajay Desai graduated from the M.S. University Baroda in 1981. He went on to study at the Royal College of Arts in London with a British Council Scholarship. He has worked at the Kanoria Centre of Arts in Ahmedabad and has taught at the National Institute of Design, Ahmedabad between 1985 and 1987. He mostly paints landscapes, and he points out, "The landscape is made of objects, and their palpable presence evokes in its own way, the life of every body we inhibit. That is why my landscapes are called anthropomorphic." While some of Desai`s earlier works employ a dramatic, mythical, narrative mode, his later works have moved towards an increasing structural emphasis where narrative disappears. His means are constantly evolving according to his needs. In his landscape-based abstractions, one finds the pronounced sensations of nature in turbulence. He often uses materials that are a brilliant amalgam of torn fabric with acrylic hues stuck and applied to the paper in urgent flourishes. The tapestries that emerge are based on the intuitive understanding of colors. He calls his painting a fusion of randomness with deliberation. He employs details from architecture, which sets his landscapes apart from the other traditional landscapes. He also employs a neo-expressionist mode of the west that manifests itself in his vigorous brush strokes. Human beings cohabit with nature in a stormy fashion and nature herself is embroidered as a mysterious, perhaps, devious entity. Ajay Desai was awarded the Navdeep award given by the Government of Gujarat, in 1998. He lives and works in Baroda.

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