15 – 21 jan, 2014 at jehangir art gallery

The universal politics of developmental mantra becomes an all encompassing formal strategy for under pinning middle class culture of our country.

K.N. Ramachandran, unlike his previous series ‘me and my canvas’ where he painted visual contemplation of urban deconstruction, and abstracted realistic visual surroundings of metamorphosis burning colored Bangalore in 2010.

His ‘Color of life’ (2013), is a fresh series of oil paintings with lively visuals of colorful South Indian life. Market is a major life source of South India along with temples and music. The irony is that we may not find such visual aesthetics in the future, with the back drop of global F.D.I. politics. Ramachandran, whose main focus is upon amalgamated glorification of not only south Indian royals but also road side market’s colorful common folks.Interestingly Ramachandran romanticized the harshness of south Indian life sources. If you observe his paintings closely you will see the presence of this mysterious painters in his work. He is weighing vegetables with a pair of South Indian primitive scales, which are linked by four chains, not three! Hence it may be a contemplation of autobiographically articulated visual presence. This perhaps gives him a sense of creative nostalgia.

Naturally the romanticized, imaginative royal South Indian narrative of pre-colonial India, ‘In the Palace’ 2013, one can recall the era of Raja Ravi Varma. The lifestyles of common folks of those days are also perceived aesthetically. Ramachandran articulated the grandeur of royals and simple beauty of the folks delicately. We can feel how royals looked after the rural vegetable venders. The grand visual world of roadside market spaces is rich in color and highlighted remarkably. The varied hues too contribute to the some of the expressionistic paintings.

He is probably one of the very few artists who doesn’t shy away from Dravidian life source; the brown aesthetic sensibility.