Wednesday, April 17, 2013


We picked up this piece of art in Pune around 2 years ago. The art collector we got this from showed us a number of pieces made by the same person (a Calcutta based artist named Dilip Kundu who struggled to make ends meet most of his adult life, wasn't very well appreciated, and one ominous day, while still a young man, he simply left home never to return. To this day, Kundu is still reported missing & presumed dead by some, perhaps also by the family he left behind...but today 3 of his works of art are displayed at the National Museum of Modern Art in Delhi. As the unfortunate cliche goes, his art & genius were appreciated after he was gone.) The story of the artist says a lot. Its evident he was a depressed soul. And while most of his work is beautifully imaginative in the most curious way, it reflects a brooding unhappiness of the artists soul. We fell in love with all his works the moment we saw them - most of them were very intricate; in varying shades of black; quirky & outlandish; and they were invariably melancholy & disturbing. That made us apprehensive about putting one on the walls of our home. But we eventually had to get this one. It's relatively less - um, how do I say this - its relatively less 'disturbing' than some of the others, but this portrait of a man weighed down by all the stuff he has been carrying on his shoulders resonates with everyone who has ever carried any baggage. I love the simplicity of this monochromatic man, he makes me shed a tear, he makes me want to reach out & share some of the weight he carries with him. He has my pity because he seems to have lost hope & he makes me wonder how he could've created art without hope...because surely, this must be a self portrait.

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