CHITRAM: Art lovers & artists connect as Chitkara University organises National Level Art Festival

Chandigarh: Pablo Picasso had rightly said, “Everything you can imagine is real.” This indeed held true at Chitram – National Level Art Festival of Chitkara School of Art & Design, a constituent institute of Chitkara University. One could see both the artist and the audience absorbed in spectacular works of art, during the 4-Day National Level Festival, which was organised from April 18-21.
The musings of the artist and the art patron found a ‘picture perfect’ setting in the University’s breathtakingly beautiful, sprawling green campus. The event turned out to be, indeed, a celebration of art!
Painting Workshops, National Seminar on ‘Art in Contemporary Society’, Interaction with students, Live Demonstrations by noted artists, and finally an Exhibition of Art Works, created during the festival, formed the impressive line-up of events during the Art Festival. The festival offered artists from a diverse range of interests, the opportunity to converge and connect, and share their wealth of experience and knowledge with aspiring artists and enthusiasts. They displayed art in a fascinating and thought-provoking manner, enabling a dialogue between the artist and the viewer.

Galaxy of artists
There was plenty of enthusiasm and creativity coming through the doors as the University invited 16 eminent contemporary artists, hailing from the different parts of India – carrying their unique identity on canvas, to participate along with scholars, students & art lovers from different Institutions at the event. Big names, including, Padma Bhushan Awardee Shri. Jatin Das from New Delhi, Amit Dutt from New Delhi, Basant Kumar Bhargava from Bhopal, Chandrashekhar Kale from Ujjain; Him Chatterjee from Shimla, Kamlesh K Gandhi from Jammu, Kishore Roy from Delhi, Manash Ranjan Jena from Bhubaneswar, Meenaketan Pattnaik from Bhubaneswar; Priya Ranjan Behera from Bengaluru, Ranjan Kummar Mallik from Chitkara University, Renu Sangwan from New Delhi, Roopak Kumar Ghadei from Hyderabad; Sanjay Biswal from New Delhi; Sudarshan Pal Singh from Chitkara University, and Vineet Bhardwaj from Haryana, were some of the mentors and participants at the Festival.

Mosaic of colours
The acrylic art work was marked by an abundance of colours and exuded freshness. Some of the pieces radiated creativity, stemming from nature and life experiences. The paintings that caught the attention of one and all were those highlighting human emotions – blurring thoughts to clarity in action, intricate abstract art painting depicting the artists’ ‘collective memories’ of cityscape on canvas, and nature in its ‘vibrant hues’.
Artist Amit Dutt from New Delhi used a subtle colour scheme to portray human emotions. “Aakar to Nirakaar,” as he named his exquisite art work, the artist went on to explain the flow of human emotions on canvas – the thought process (images from blur to clarity) to reach a meditative state of calm through the chaos. Dutt, whose works are based on the poetic representation of human body and its spiritual part, used a combination of charcoal and acrylic paint to bring the masterpiece to life.

A twist of imagination
Art Festivals provide a platform where the artist and the audience are in direct contact enabling the artist to communicate a message to the viewer so that he can hold a dialogue with the creator. Artist Renu Sangwan from New Delhi, whose work mostly focuses on creation of beautiful imageries representing mythological characters of women, paints to speak to her audience in the language of bold colours – reds, yellows & oranges that conjure up sunlight and fire! Painting a “powerful, strong and proud of herself” embodiment of Maa Durga in Red, Sangwan spoke of a woman who holds her ground. Similarly, artist Kishore Roy from Delhi whose art pieces usually portray the beauty of the Divine couple ‘Radha & Krishna’ and the ‘Jataka’ Tales, embraced history with a twist of imagination on his canvas.

Beauty in the eyes of the beholder, indeed!
Contemporary artist Basant Kumar Bhargava from Bhopal is fascinated by the beauty of cityscape and loves to create abstracts with the theme. His landscapes do not refer to any specific place but rather to those he has created with his active imagination or “collective memories” as he aptly describes them. This time again at the Arts Festival, the artist was spotted painting “city life as viewed by him – a collection of his memories”. Fascinated by nature’s beauty, artist Sanjay Kumar Biswal from New Delhi picks up themes and ideas from the Nature. “Nature is my muse. I love to bring the beauty of the outdoors onto the canvas,” he explains pointing to his stunning ‘work-in-progress’ art piece.

On a high note
Chitram 2019 concluded on a high note with hundreds of art enthusiasts – students from Animation, Design, Fine Arts, Visual Arts, Photography and various other streams, gathered around one of India’s most iconic artist Padma Bhushan Awardee Shri Jatin Das, for a rare treat, an opportunity, as he demonstrated his creative process with an exclusive Live Painting Workshop at Chitkara University campus. “Put art in everything for rhythm,” he suggested the students, giving an incredibly energising talk as he spoke about his artistic journey.

Speaking about the Chitram Art Festival, Hon’ble Dr Madhu Chitkara, Vice Chancellor, Chitkara University, “The aim of Chitram was to support rich talents and provide art enthusiasts a platform to learn, explore, innovate, discover, focus, reach and achieve – all under one roof. As educators, we aspire to go beyond traditional learning to give our students unique opportunities to blossom.”

Other programs that were a part of the event included, ‘Meet the Artist Program’ and an Interactive Session on ‘Art Therapy & Colour Therapy’ with the students & faculty. The event concluded with a catalogue release and an exhibition of the artworks produced during the workshop.