Mumbai: Navi Mumbai-based artist Srushti Rao’s art exhibition is happening at the Nehru Art Gallery from 25th April 2023 to 1st May 2023. A trained artist with a practice of 21 years, Srushti’s paintings always express a state of precariousness and possible aesthetic solutions. She is showing a collection of her works in an exhibition titled ‘Visual Chronologies and Discursive Binaries’. The show exhibits works from three of the artist’s series – Transposed, A Chasm in Time and Transcendence. Her work is based on exploring the deeper meanings of belonging, emotional intelligence, and relationships.
“An eternal flow of emotions, powerful and poetic but not romantic as in the case of poetry, had suddenly come to a halt with the pandemic. One of the most powerful images was a series of clocks showing the time clicked by different photographers on a virtual agreement in different parts of the world. Isolated from the relationships that human beings could make with the time contained in those clocks, they looked like static emblems or signage that showed nothing,” says an excerpt from her latest show introduction by Delhi-based culture critic and art curator, Johny ML.
A closer look at the works of Srushti reveals the painterly nuances that the artist adapts in order to create the visual effect. The predominant optical illusionism is carefully constructed by the artist using dexterous use of colours and their diminishing and increasing shades are suddenly interpolated with tangentially moving sharp lines of the dominant colour. These slashes illuminate the area around them and attract the viewers’ eyes for deep meditations. “I am keen to explore the relationship between time and space, and how those dictate human behaviour. The abstraction of moments captivates me like the ebbing and flowing of the sea waves. Space of forever and time is transient.
This interlocking relationship between them is particularly fascinating to me. My practice has evolved with time and I have worked across themes, but these two aspects are my favourite to work on.” said Artist Srushti Rao, as she explained her practice. Srushti has an added reason to speak of the time. In her poetic explanations that accompany some of her works, she speaks of the time directly but more in philosophical terms. This mutuality between words and the optical experience given by the paintings functions as a key to enter the paintings for those people who demand a ‘set of meanings’ to be released by a work of art. People come before a work of art with monochronic ideas; they think that time is an incessant progress from one point to the other and culture develops in a linear way.
But what Srushti offers in her paintings is a polychronic idea that transcends time’s linearity and takes it to the malleability of time and cultural constructs. Despite all visuality and spirituality that Srushti’s paintings tend to reveal in terms of the painterly surfaces and the experiential take away respectively, the artist does not just reject the physical conditions of living and the ways in which life is understood by billions of people on the earth. Srushti’s paintings resort to the scientific methodology of optical effects and at the same time, she engages with the question of binaries and asks people to look beyond the binaries to see and enjoy life fully. That makes Srushti Rao a sensitive artist.
Dates of the show: 25th April 2023 to 1st May 2023
Venue: Nehru Art Gallery, Worli, Mumbai