Artist Suraj Kashi makes visual stories seeped in mythology and surrealism

 Artist Suraj Kashi makes visual stories seeped in mythology and surrealism

Painting titled Balance in Life by Suraj Kumar Kashi

Team L&M

To Be Or Not To Be at Arushi Arts Gallery, a solo show by artist and master storyteller Suraj Kumar Kashi, depicts surrealism at its best. Significantly, all of the 18 works – oil & acrylic on canvas – on display here were created by the artist during the lockdown period.

“As Indians, we have grown with surrealism all around us. We see the elephant-headed Lord Ganesha, the monkey Lord Hanuman, Gods and Goddesses with multiple faces or arms all around us. We also see surrealism in the stories we listen to, like animals that can talk, or humans who can fly,” he says talking about why he chooses surrealism as his underlying theme. “Surrealism exists everywhere. In our homes, in our folklores, in our stories and even in our dreams,” he adds.

Kashi was fed on surrealistic stories right from childhood. Every time his mother had to ensure he finishes food, she would tell him a story. Slowly, these stories became a part of his subconscious mind, and started following him, first in his dreams, then on canvas.

“It all started one day when I was painting. Suddenly, I felt that the characters on the canvas have come alive and started to fly and dance right in front of my eyes! It was a thrilling moment for me to witness my creation, which wasn’t even under my control! My love for surrealism has only grown since then,” he says.

Myths, mall culture and metropolitan lifestyle attract Kashi in equal proportion. “I am from a small town boy who grew up dreaming about living in a metro city, all of which find a voice in my works,” he adds.

Most of his works are bright and happy, show women and men, adorned with beautiful flowers, as no less than Gods and Goddesses. “I want to disseminate positive energy, that’s the reason I use bright colors, flowers, elements of nature and patterns etc. I believe these works will help people break out from the concrete jungles they live in,” he added.

Each of his works has a story to tell, but this story he would rather have the viewer decipher, and “it can be different for different viewers”. “I start my work with a big central figure, and then keep adding everything around it slowly to convert my paintings into a visual story,” he says.

The show is on view till January 14, 11m – 6.30pm at Arushi Arts Gallery,
W-23, Greater Kailash, Part-2, New Delhi-110048




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