Lack of contemporaries
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Thread: Lack of contemporaries

  1. #1
    bhanu's Avatar
    bhanu is offline Registered User Level 16 Gladiator: Spartacus' Retiarii
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    Lack of contemporaries

    SO , I have been staring at this Posting Box , and its a bit hard to put feelings to the words . But please bear with me and let me have a go with it.

    For the past 1 and half years, I have been making rounds to exhibitions and galleries surveying the art the artists in the local art scene. At the same time I have taken my portfolios to a whole of these galleries and curators , to display. I have seen my work really gets reactions out of people, in most folks the reaction is of bewilderment , surprise and somewhat degree of disgust. They ask why I paint macabre ? Am I a masochist?
    I do explain myself and my art to the extent that I can (click if you want to know why).


    Almost everyone suggests I go to american galleries, which i have also approached, who by the way have been warmer to my art I guess, but chose not to work with me because of my current location in India.

    Artsy galleries, they have their sets of reactions as well. Most of them say that my works fairly interesting and strong. And then they say that it doesnt really fit in with the art they display.
    It is very frustrating , I must say, but there are onlly a few types of art scenes in Delhi, the smaller galleries choose to go with picturesque artists , who mostly paint gods and sadhus in semi/quasi oriental/Indian style. Then there are artists who work in a poor man's impressionist styles. And then there are the abstract artists.
    The bigger better galleries, have artists mostly dealing with installations(and the rest of the post modern artists).
    I am not saying that the artists suck here, but just that I Know as I am the only nu/low brow figurative artist around. Even with the artists I respect I cannot put an exhibition with , just because all their styles are so dissimilar to my own, its absurd to put a show together like this.
    I have tried displaying work a few group exhibitions ,but the reactions I get are the same.
    People suggest I work with sculptors , since my work deals in relief. But the same problems exist there, the lack of figurative artists.

    For the near future I have put this exhibition jargon behind me, and I am currently working on a comic .
    I really dont know what kind of a reply I want, I dont know if its solutions I seek , or just sympathy. Or maybe a kick in the balls to keep working.
    But I would say that its getting to me alot lately, constantly feeling like a misfit.

    Sorry for the Rant.
    Take care and happy holidays and new year.

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    Make a market where you live and build up a reputation, then branch out to other countries.
    If it's not what people want, building up the reputation will be difficult.

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    Bhanu, maybe try some galleries in Bombay? I've been out of the gallery scene for almost 3 years now but I think some of the new galleries are a lot more ...adventurous (for the lack of a better word).

    I'll do some digging and try and send you a list of names

    BTW I think your work is fantastic and I do wish we had more stuff like that around, instead of the regular kitschy Rajasthani-women-next-to-wells, vacant-eyed-Brahmin-boys and such.

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    bhanu is offline Registered User Level 16 Gladiator: Spartacus' Retiarii
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    Outa context - @ Iridyse -Are you Indian??
    Checked yer blog, yes you are .
    Mind if I asked where youy are currently based?

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    Heh yes. I'm from (and currently in) Bombay.

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    Try not to have anything to do with those artists who work in contemporary or abstract / semi-abstract styles.

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    We all have to face this at some point in our careers. If you want to be in galleries you have to sell your work and that means you have to give the galleries something to sell. Or you can approach museums and try to get them to support what you do. At some point though you have to decide and either make your art a commodity or keep it for yourself. This has nothing to do with style or subject and more to do with other people attaching a monetary value to what you create. As soon as someone invests in you with their money they will want a say in what gets done with the work. That is just life and you have to be exceptional to avoid it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Xeon_OND View Post
    Try not to have anything to do with those artists who work in contemporary or abstract / semi-abstract styles.
    My teacher went to Sir JJ School of the Arts in the late 80s, and from what he has described to me it sounds as the though the art landscape (relative to abstract art) in India is quite different from that of America, Western Europe, and wherehaveyou. To paraphrase a lot of what he has told me, abstract artists are not generally accepted in India unless they have demonstrated an understanding of representational painting.

    I will have to say, though, and I think he would agree, that because he has been living in the United States for almost 20 years a lot of what he has known about art culture in India may not be as relevant as it was when he was going to school there.

    Bhanu, if you want an Indian perspective on getting represented by a gallery you could always contact my teacher on Facebook (Vilas Tonape).

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    Honestly I find your works more inspiring than 90% of what I see on CA.org. Sure there's a lot of "neat" stuff on here to look at, but there is a lack in depth of personal emotion people put in to pieces. I would say, never sacrifice the means in which you want to convey how you see the world for the recognition of others.

    But hey, I'm just a random guy on the internet with an opinion hah.

    Last edited by slowcheetah; December 28th, 2009 at 06:39 PM.
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    OmenSpirits is offline Commercial-Illustrator in-training, NOT an artist. Level 13 Gladiator: Retiarius
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    You can have two sets of art.

    The type that gets you in the door. and the kind that expresses.

    One will help the other in the long run. Getting in the door is the hardest part, and compromises have to be made, but once you're established you can challenge the precepts of those that would normally shun your work.

    Last edited by OmenSpirits; December 29th, 2009 at 05:57 PM.
    "Everything must serve the idea. The means used to convey the idea should be the simplest and clear. Just what is required. No extra images. To me this is a universal principle of art. Saying as much as possible with a minimum of means."
    -John Huston, Director
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    Hyskoa- i understand what you mean. But getting the foot in the door is getting hard too, the thing is, if I make people friendly style te problem with that is , if I come any close being established with that style, I will get stereotyped with it, i know artists who have the same issue, who have a style that sells and who cannot branch out because nothing else they gets accepted.
    And If I have to do commercial stuff, I'd rather do illustration and comics, which is also something I am working towards. Thank you

    Iridyse- thanks, but the more adventurous galleries are basically too much into post modernism and conceptual art. I do think that I have more of a chance with them than anybody else. It would be really nice of you to get names of a few galleries I can approach. THanks again.

    Xeon OND - Well I would go as far as not have anything to do with them, but yes for exhibitions I gues its not such a good deal. Thanks

    Dpaint- Firstly , I do know that my art is a commodity, infact when i am done with a painting, I do feel that it belongs to the world , not just me. Like I said, in the exhibition world, if you get established with a certain style , it becomes even harder to branch out, so that an option I must really think about before approaching. Thank you.

    Ninjerk- Sadly the thing isnt true anymore , that an artist has to prove he/she is good with representational art before he/she ventures into something else. Actually I am studying the international art scene and even their I am noticing that , of the financial facet of th art market, the figurative art makes a very small niche. Its pretty much the same case everywhere, its just Indian market isnt much so keen to niches.
    Thanks for the advice and I would love to ask some question to your Teacher, please do let him that , so my queries dont seem liek they came out of the blue. Thanks

    Slowcheetah- Thank you, though I would say concept art has other purposes than fine art. Different means to different ends I guess. The thing is that there must always be a balance between external validation and personal truth . I am seeking that too I suppose. Thank you

    Omen Spirits - Thanks. Yes I do need to balance the two aspects you mentioned. Lets see how that goes. Thank you


    Thank you for your responses and help , more of it would also be appreciated.
    I am thinking of more ways I can use to get in teh exhibition scene. Lets see I can do something .
    Thanks

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    yo bhanu!
    I don't know who that Hina K is, and i hope not to insult you, but to me he/she seems to be an pretty unsensitive person, the way he/she reacts on the things you say her don't sound she/he is really into art, so i hope you are not dependend of that kind of people, because otherwise its going to be tough job!

    I think your work, your progress and ideas are very good, and i think you will eventually get a chance to get some kind of breakthrough. after all your just in your early twenties right? Aren't you able to go to europe or america? maybe just for a month or so, and do some good contacting?
    I hope at least you won't change your work because of this shit, and if you do it, do it in your own, right way. don't let those Hina K people decide for you what you make. I think you won't.

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