Painting Exhibition portraying abiding love for Rajasthan ends

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New Delhi, Apr 6 (UNI) It was an enthralling display of paintings portraying the intrinsic beauty of the monuments of Rajasthan that have inspired poets and litterateurs from time immemorial.

An exhibition of paintings by young artist Soumen Dutta, capturing the grandeur of the huge gates, the narrow streets, the beautifully carved walls, and the innate presence of the average citizenry of Rajasthan in a manner that is unique and eye-catching, came to a close here last evening.

Infact, the beautiful images of Rajasthan landscape captured in the paintings displayed at the exhibition, held at the Palm Court gallery of the India Habitat Centre from April 1 to 5 , left even the renowned Kathak Maestro, Padma Vibhubhushan Pandit Birju Maharaj, who inaugurated the exhibition on April 1, so impressed that he even lost count of time and stayed on much longer than he had anticipated, often lost in thought as he viewed the canvases.

Even the master, who holds audiences spell-bound by his mere presence on stage, was captivated by the simple beauty and intricate detail of what he saw.

Later, Birju Maharaj said the intricate details into which the young artist Soumen Dutta had gone and the intrinsic beauty he had portrayed while painting the monuments of Rajasthan had fascinated him.

The canvases were larger, the lines deeper, presenting a greater introspective variety. But the fascination with the majestic cities of Rajasthan and the historical perspective they present remains the same.

Talking about his work, Dutta said,''Rajasthan is a vibrant and exotic state where modernity has blended beautifully into the environs of history, and where royalty and the common folk have always joined together in colourful festivity to observe the customs and traditions through music and dance styles that remain alive even today in their ethnicity.'' He said the state - which is home to some of the country's most glorious palaces, invincible forts, and huge lakes on the one hand, and the cruel desert on the other - presents a variegated culture that is both entrancing and captivating.

''And yet, it is a state with a mysticism which appears to beckon everyone to come back again and again, whichever city one is in - Jaipur, Udaipur, Bikaner and Jaisalmer or other smaller towns like Bundi and Kota in this northern state. Even the huge desert in the Aravalli Hills do not put off the visitor, and the barren golden sand dunes have a beauty of their own, challenging the imagination of the tourist and the artist,''Dutta said.

It in his unique paintings - thirty works 'Inspired by Rajasthan' done on Canvas on a new mode, Egyptian Papyrus which were originally drawn as sketches as the artist traveled across Rajasthan and then translated onto canvas.

''This time I have done work in a new and unique technique, and all the works are done in black and white as well as acrylic strokes with ink.'' Dutta said.

In his late twenties, dutta hails from Kolkata, but fell in love with the urbane beauty of Rajasthan when he visited it and decided to capture this beauty through his black and white ink drawings and through water colours.

Though he first took part in a group exhibition in 2003 and the first solo exhibition came a year later on varied subjects, he feels that Rajasthan has offered him a subject that is very ripe for a painter who wants to experiment with new forms and styles.

This artist who has taken part in several group and solo exhibitions has also been teaching many students for the past eight years in several schools in Delhi, where he lives.

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