Nationwide Award-winning woodcut print artist Vijay Pitchumani speaks about discovering frequent patterns in happenings round us.
It’s so quiet inside Artwork Houz gallery you can hear a pin drop… till a homicide of crows within the distance decides to disturb it. The hoarse cawing transports artist Vijay Pitchumani to a chaotic morning, 5 years in the past, when his life started to make sense.
Vijay had simply handed out of Authorities Faculty of Superb Arts with a set of expertise in portray and printmaking, however little clue about the place to make use of them. Being the primary teen ever to return out of the cocoon that was Pechi Parai, a small village within the foothills of the Western Ghats in Kanyakumari, he was anticipated to return in asuit, polished footwear and a heavy pockets. However Vijay had simply began out in his profession. It was a problem, he admits, however a harder one was explaining the identical to his of us.
“‘What are you going to do? Will you discover a job? You will have been finding out for six years…’ My father began evaluating me with those that had accomplished their engineering in 4 years, joined multinational firms, and have been offering for his or her households,” Vijay recollects his dad’s pissed off voice rising above the nonetheless ponds, calmly-grazing cows and faintly-creaking bamboo round. What he recollects extra distinctly is the noise that adopted — 100 cawing crows blotted the intense morning sky. His mom stopped milking the cow, his father stopped reducing the bamboo stalks, and all of the three ran in direction of the spot above which the crows have been making extensive circles. “The supply of chaos was a lifeless crow. It’s ironical that whereas they mourned their loss, I used to be grateful for the distraction from the flood of questions that I didn’t have solutions to,” he recollects. From that second, Vijay began sincerely sketching what he noticed, little realizing that it was the beginning of an obsession that may give beginning to a collection on the shiny black birds.
“I might flip each time I heard one. As soon as, I used to be at Lalit Kala Akademi for the launch of an artwork present. Whereas the remainder have been stepping into the exhibit corridor, I stood exterior watching two crows combating. I couldn’t get my eyes off them. I realised that this combat, which was least important for the remainder of the gathering, was extra vital to me than the launch,” he says. On a philosophical stage, Vijay realised that individuals’s priorities are completely different. “Every particular person has his or her distinct journey,” he says, and provides after a thought, “Whereas I used to be a child, my mother and father used to say that if I didn’t obey them, I might find yourself hanging the other way up like a bat. Each of them would stand up at three a.m., mild the kerosene lamp, get up my brothers and I to check, and go away for his or her day by day chores. Some days, once they obtained again for breakfast, they might discover us sprawled on the ground, books crumbled underneath us, and some strands of our hair burnt within the lamp’s flame. I might later take into consideration the bat concept and get scared. It took me years to grasp that bats dangle the other way up as a result of they’re wired to take action; it’s not a dysfunctionality or a punishment.”
So, Vijay determined to embrace his uniqueness. He acknowledged his energy in drawing and joined artwork faculty, although his father wished him to be an advocate. He gained the very best scholar award in printmaking whereas in faculty, a scholarship from Lalit Kala Akademi, and an award from Elango Basis. A Nationwide Award for woodcut print, final 12 months, gave him the arrogance to proceed on the pockmarked street of being an artist, which nobody from his village may settle for as a occupation. “Once I informed them concerning the award, they didn’t perceive its magnitude,” he laughs.
Nevertheless, the prize cash of Rs. 1 lakh introduced some aid to his household’s monetary scenario. “However, solely to an extent. Truthfully, cash doesn’t matter a lot to me. I’m at peace, although my household will not be. They count on me to earn, marry, purchase a home and settle, however I do know that life is rather more than that. There have been many lonely nights, and lengthy rides once I query my position on this world. These ideas ship me spiralling into one other journey to hunt solutions, which later discover a kind in my works,” he says.
Vijay’s new exhibition, ‘Dots’, is on at Artwork Houz Gallery, Kasturi Rangan Street, until October 20.
The strategy of woodcut print entails carving out a sample from wooden, making use of ink on the embossed elements, after which printing it onto a paper. For Vijay, greater than the prints, it’s the texture of the wooden that he finds interesting. Vijay says that there’s a frequent sample “within the rings of a bark, the veins of a leaf, the ripples in a pond, the movement of lava from a volcano, and the crack when a telephone falls on the ground”. He believes that it’s most likely due to this sample that we’re capable of sense the breeze, hear a sound, or really feel an object. After six years of observing roots, shoots and leaves, watching movies of arteries and veins contained in the human physique, and finding out the idea of lightning, Vijay now sees a sample that’s invisible to the traditional eye. “I need to discover extra. I need to know what the elements of blood are like. Have they got the identical sample?”