Experimental by nature, Kashyap Parikh (b. 1970) is a multidimensional artist who has many styles and does not limit himself to working with one medium. Parikh comes from a family of artist’s whose contribution to Indian art and Gujarat’s fine arts is noteworthy. An alumnus of Faculty of Fine Arts, MSU, Vadodara, he has also taught there for 25 years and at present heads the Applied Arts Department. This bank of experience comes handy in being in sync with the latest trends, research and understanding of various subjects, techniques, and material.
There are Prakaar (variants) in shapes, colours, medium, size, genre, tones, lines, and the list goes on. Prakaar is endless. This series is all about one artist and diverse Prakaar. To compose it short, one can say his body of work is interlaced with spirituality and humanity. It is about energy, nature, growth and power being a vital extension.
My first impression while viewing his works was like watching a contemporary Brahmand (Universe). It gave me wings to imagine how the universe would look in watercolours. How would the universe look after a Big Bang created with free and expressive lines? The colourful blobs felt like tiny planets.
The strength of the artist over his medium can be judged by observing the layered watercolour works with bright and transparent colours that successfully retains the tonal character of each colour.
It is the use of colour and its composition that gets the viewers to zoom into the dark matter and focus on the atom in the middle.
This is my imagination, and the beauty of his works is anyone can imagine and they are free to imagine. The artist is open to any such depiction and invites his viewers to be a part of his work. That is very interesting for me as a viewer where I am open to judge, imagine, think and make the art part of my life and thoughts.
The Indian cosmic forms that are sacred and powerful take a superpower form in Parikh’s works with a strong composition. The beauty lies in the free movement of abstract forms. The abstract forms seem like planned but they are very much spontaneous. These new ‘forms’ clusters are a treat to watch. However, what makes these works to the next level are the bright and fresh Indian colours. The traditional colour palette with thick and clean outlines makes it striking.
The potential of these works is such that wherever they are displayed it can create a festive mood. The colours add value to these lines and how! The more you say or write about such works, the more you are disturbing them. These works are just meant to watch and enjoy every day.
Black is the most powerful colour in the palate. As much it can add value to the work it has immense potential to destroy work in a blink of an eye. Then we have, white, which is opposite to what black is. To play with white lines parallel to pure black shows confidence and depth as an artist. The Brahmand or the universe is composed of dark matters. Here, in this works the powerful energy comes out from black through white lines. In some works, the power of lines is such that you may feel the energy is exploding. You are witnessing the expansion of space.
These white dots and lines add a visual drama to his works. The void space in between the filaments is also a hidden factor why these works look stunning. The overall collection vibe is where the form (line, shape, and dot) is an energy, and at the same time, the energy plays the form.
The universe is often defined as the totality of existence. The totality of lines is one thing that forms the base of Parikh’s works. What I found is the quality of bhin bhin prakar ki lines ( different types of lines) A variety of lines which are curvy, thin, thick, straight, lyrical, poetic, bold, depth, transparent are on the surface. The innocence and pureness in his lines have its own character if I may think so. At times they are bold and the rest of the time they are beautiful. A viewer can experience his work, by just following his lines from the starting point in a dot. A spiritual zone awaits you!
Majority of his works are mixed media ie. use of more than one medium in one work. The depth in his works comes from the magical treatment of his medium’s surface. The layers he creates incites the viewer to be the part of that atom, that space.
I like the fact that as an artist Parikh is always open to experiment and in accord with the latest trends. This approach is very important for an artist’s longevity, depth and innovation. The career life span increases and that is very important not even for the artist but also for his collectors and fans.
There are certain artworks, which ask for your time. Parikh’s works demand that time. Only then, it can reward you with a wonderful feeling of being with ‘Yourself’. To introspect and to act!
Parikh’s art comes from deep thinking, imagination, involvement, patience, devotion, dedication, purity and divinity. To understand his works, one doesn’t need to have knowledge of art. His art itself makes the viewer realise the power of creation.
Photos and Text © A Diary of a Curator ®