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     Volume 8 Issue 66 | April 24, 2009 |

  Cover Story
  Current Affairs
  Neighbours - When   all of India goes to   the Polls
  Neighbours - Manoj   Tiwari: “Gorakhpur’s   Obama”
  Art -Art   Extravaganza
  Art -Lines and   Splashes that   Speak of   Individuality
  Star Diary
  Book Review
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Art - Lines and Splashes that Speak of Individuality

Lines and Splashes that Speak of Individuality

Fayza Haq

Top Left: Fall in rose (Acrylic on canvas), Bottom Left: Cattle and Nature (Acrylic on canvas), Right: Marigold (Acrylic on canvas)

Rashed Kamal Russell, has been experimenting with from and media remarkable effects since 2000. He has three solos to his credit, and numerous joint exhibitions, both at home and in places like Europe, Australia, Malaysia and Nepal. His experience includes art workshops and art camps at home and overseas.

In his ongoing exhibition, "Lyrical lines", at La Galerie , Alliance Francaise (on till April 30), the artist investigates into scenes commonly seen in parks. In "Falling rose" two figures are seen talking to each other, while another two enjoy a rest seated on a bench, at a distance. A fifth head is included in the composition and this stands for the artist himself, taking in the love scene. Blocks of yellow and gray are included in the burnt yellow backdrop of dried grass. Another such canvas, with the same theme, is done in simply black and white, with a touch of red and green for the rose. Figures without heads lend interest to the composition. The use of only black and white is also dramatic.

The figures in "Spring festival" have elongated necks and long wobbly hands. The faces of the merrymakers bear no details, although traces of a white flower and some white and red artificial jewellery are included, as also a hedge, with small yellow blossoms.

In his presentation of landscapes from the Hill Tracts, Russell brings in sweeps and lines of black and gray on white paper, which, despite the economy of lines bring in the image of hills, a village and water in front with and impact. The subjects are suggested rather than done in details.

Another such rapid brush -work presents a woman climbing a staircase on a hill. At times simple lines take the place of trees. This too is done in gray and black smudges and lines.

Another restful, lyrical creation is "Cattle and nature", which includes a number of white cows seen on an emerald green pathway in the forest. The tree trunks are seen as black and yellow slender, vertical lines.

The toil of the masses affects Russell as it does so many young artists. The making of "roti" and "paratha" are shown in sweeps and lines, as is also that of "biryani". These are done with the use of strong black sketches on a yellow background. Similarly, the subject of labourers emptying boats create rhythmic lines to depict boats, houses, water and shore.

Russell says that the encouragement of his family and friends has been essential for his success. He says that his teachers, like Rafiqun Nabi and Hamiduzzaman, have also guided and encouraged him on. Among the European masters of the past, Matisse, Van Gogh and Picasso hold a special place for him. "I try not to copy these masters or my teachers, and move on in my own way," says Russell. He teaches at the University of Development Alternative along with his creative work. He usually paints after dusk, developing from sketches, which he ponders over for days on end.

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