Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan says all by means of the lockdowns, he was busy engaged on his new assortment and in curating two exhibitions

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan on the importance of ‘Maiya, the author’ set up in his oeuvre

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan on the importance of ‘Maiya, the author’ set up in his oeuvre

On the campus of CMS College in Kottayam, sculptor KS Radhakrishnan’s Maiya is a author. Her sinuous, minimalistic body is bent over a e-book. A hand on a e-book and a pen preserve her riveted to the 10-feet granite pillar she rests on; The act of writing retains the inverted Maiya grounded whereas her creativeness, evident in her posture, leaves her unfettered. The bronze sculpture is a tribute to his hometown, Kottayam, well-known for its romance with letters and studying, printing and publishing.

“‘Maiya, the writer’, symbolises empowerment, the thinking woman, the woman with a will and mind of her own. I wanted the writer to be placed at a height to give the woman and writer an elevated position,” says Radhakrishnan. He is shocked that even now many males in Kerala discover it tough to work together with a girl with an unbiased thoughts. “It is unfortunate. Perhaps, if we position a woman in a place of learning, like in the case of Maiya, it might change the way a man perceives a woman,” he hopes.

The sculptor was passing through Thiruvananthapuram after the inauguration of his work in CMS College.

Radhakrishnan, a student of Ram Kinkar Biaj in Santiniketan has emulated his mentor and integrated elements of Santhal art into his oeuvre. Maiya and Musui, a woman and man, are his muse. They are iconic figures in his sculptures, large and small, as he uses the human motifs in his artistic works to convey his impressions. Maiya and Musui look the same but for their gender; together they eloquently express in bronze Radhakrishnan’s takes on gender, society, history, nostalgia and loss.

This is his third sculpture in Kerala. The first was at Mananchira in Kozhikode. The second was installed at the Municipal Park in Kottayam just before the lockdown in 2020. “I was requested to make a sculpture for Kottayam. It was to be placed in any location of my liking. I went around a few places in Kottayam and chose the park as the ideal spot for the installation. I want my creations to be with the people and for people to be with the works. For that to happen, the works have to be installed in a place that people frequent,” he explains. Three bronze figures, stark and acrobatic, rest on granite pillars of 12- 15- and 18 feet respectively. Radhakrishan calls them ‘Bahurupi’.

“The one in the middle has kept his feet on his head and he is the picture of bliss. I want movement in my figures. That is when they move their viewers as well. The one in the middle indicates position (stillness) while the other two depictions gathi (movement). There is liminality in us and that is why I called them Bahurupi liminal figures,” he elaborates.

Six months in the past, when the Principal of CMS College Varghese C Joshua puzzled if Radhakrishnan would make a chunk for the school, he fortunately agreed. “The leafy campus of the school has greater than 500 species of timber and a wooded space of ​​six acres. Such a inexperienced haven in the course of town is exclusive. I believed it could be a stunning house for Maiya, the author,” says the artist with a big smile.

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan and his works in bronze in the Municipal Park in Kottayam

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan and his works in bronze within the Municipal Park in Kottayam | Photo Credit: Special association

Explaining why he works solely in bronze, Radhakrishnan says that solely that provides him the liberty to make the airborne, minimalistic figures that he creates. “I can’t make that in stone. There is a lightness of being in my works and I don’t think I can do it in any other medium. Bronze is a strong, yet flexible medium to work in. Moreover, since I begin all my creations in mud and follow the lost wax method, my piece retains the ruggedness and texture of the mud. As a sculptor, I come from a school where the initial modeling is done in clay.”

During his current go to to Kottayam in July for the set up of the author, Radhakrishnan was happy to see the municipal park crammed with households. “That is the way a sculpture should be positioned. What is the use of putting up busts and statues in traffic islands that we only see when we are passing by in a vehicle? There is no time to appreciate it or relate to it,” he asserts.

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan and his bust of former President APJ Abdul Kalam

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan and his bust of former President APJ Abdul Kalam | Photo Credit: Special association

Radhakrishan factors out that putting in busts and statues ought to have a context as an alternative of randomly finding them at anywhere. He factors to the apply of constructing busts of the Presidents of India, that are saved in Rashtrapati Bhavan in Delhi. These busts are made when a President is in workplace and he/she does a number of sittings for the chosen artiste.

“I used to be invited to do a bust of President KR Narayanan. Thanks to that chance, I used to be capable of get to know from shut quarters a exceptional scholar and a high-quality human. It was the identical with President APJ Abdul Kalam. I thought-about it an honor to make a bust of that nice man,” he explains.

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan with former President APJ Abdul Kalam

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan with former President APJ Abdul Kalam | Photo Credit: Special association

During the lockdowns, Radhakrishnan selected to spent his time in Santiniketan, engaged on a brand new present, ‘A Crowd dispersed’ , that shall be inaugurated at Emami Art, Kolkata in January 2023.

Simultaneously, he was engaged on the centenary exhibition on Somnath Hore (‘Somnath Hore: A centenary exhibition’), which explores the myriad works of the late artist, and on a centenary tribute to Satyajit Ray (‘Iti Satyajit Da’), each in Kolkata.

“At the Emami Art inside Kolkata Center for Creativity, The Satyajit Ray Centenary Show, which I curated, had photographs of Ray that were clicked by several photographers, some unpublished too, original posters of his films and copies of 52 letters that Ray had written to a family friend and admirer. Although I was nervous about holding an exhibition in Kolkata, in the midst of Ray bhakhtsthe exhibition and a book on Ray was very well received,” he says.

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan poses with his work, on the first day of India Art Fair at NSIC in New Delhi

Sculptor KS Radhakrishnan poses together with his work, on the primary day of India Art Fair at NSIC in New Delhi | Photo Credit: Shiv Kumar Pushpakar

Radhakrishnan can be intently concerned with the working of Arthshila Foundation, a personal artwork middle on the premises of Santiniketan. He says that for 2 years now, alongside together with his work, he has additionally been documenting the works of Hore and compiled a 460-page quantity on the late artist. “We cannot wait for the university to bring about initiatives. His relevance must be conveyed to students and they must understand his works. Arthshila is a significant beginning,” he believes. The artiste says will probably be a cultural middle with completely different actions deliberate each month and curated by veterans in numerous creative fields.

All reward for the Kochi Biennale and Lokame Tharavadu exhibitions, he says these exhibitions have given an opportunity for viewers to grasp the work by main artists in India. “Otherwise, individuals in Kerala would have been conditioned to watching solely the works of artists right here. Unfortunately, some artists in Kerala will not be occupied with wanting past the periphery and they aren’t eager on making a stage that’s conducive for artistes from exterior the State to point out in Kerala. ,

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