ART EVENTS IN BANGALORE


Black & White: Saleem Shoyab
30th Sep – 20th Oct, 10:00am – 07:00pm
Alliance Francaise De Bangalore, 108, Off Queens Road, Thimmaiah Road, Opposite UNI Building, Vasanth Nagar, Central, Bangalore
Alliance Francaise has been in favour of supported new artists to make a mark in the fiercely competitive world of art. In fact, they prove this commitment by allowing new artists to showcase their work within the Alliance Francaise premises. Black & White is such an exhibition put by Saleem Shoyab, who has acquired his Master of Visual Arts in Painting this year from College of Fine Arts, Karnataka Chitrakala Parishat.

Saleem’s style of art is really interesting. He uses ink on paper to draw human forms and then clothes them with relevant words. His paintings serve to make a social comment on various burning issues like rape or depression. All the artworks displayed in this exhibition are in black and white; there is no colour used in them.

Flame Of The Forest
25th Sep – 14th Oct, 07:00pm – 10:00am
Kynkyny Art Gallery, Building No. 104, Embassy Square, Road No. 148, Near Police Commissioner Hall, Infantry Road, Central, Bangalore
Kynkyny Art’s latest show crisscrosses generations, genres and time spans, and casts a soulful eye on the worlds of nature, myth, romance and selfhood ‘Flame of the Forest’ features an unusual pairing of two accomplished artists, father-daughter duo, Paresh Hazra and Aditi Hazra. Together, they craft a poignant visual saga that transcends genres and generations. This exhibition is the result of a delightful collaboration between the unique and disparate visions of the two Bangalore-based contemporary artists. From Paresh’s rich, magical tapestries of gods and mermaids, to Aditi’s striking, fluid, disjointed female forms, the art works offer diverse narrative threads that coalesce as well as riff off each other. The modern wilderness imagined by the two Bengali artists brims with dynamism and wisdom and offers a thoughtful commentary on several vital themes, from nature, history and myths to fantasy, feeling and connection.

MOSAICS (Continued)

Mosaics in Byzantium
Byzantine culture is more open to mosaics than Western Europe was, and this art form flourished in this region from the 6th to the 15h centuries. Golden mosaics were the norm in Byzantine church interiors. Most of the mosaics did not survive the wars and conquests that have taken place in this part of the world, but what remains is still a respectable amount.
Gone are the mosaics of the great building of the Emperor Justinian – the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople, the Nea Church in Jerusalem, the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem. But the mosaic floor of the great palace of Constantinople , commissioned during Justinian’s reign, survives. Figures of animals and plants against a plain background are Classical in style. The portrait of a man with a moustache – probably a Gothic chieftain – is considered to be the most important surviving mosaic of the Justinian age.

The so-called Gothic chieftain, from the Mosaic Peristyle of the Great Palace of Constantinople

Closely following the Classical tradition are the vine scroll motifs found in the mosaics in the small sekreton of the palace which was built in the reign on Justinian II. The Church of the Acheiropoietos in Thessaloniki, from the 5-6th centuries, has mosaic depicting floral decoration.
In the 6th century, Ravenna, the capital of Byzantine Italy, became the centre of mosaic making. Istria also boasts some important examples from this era. The Euphrasian Basilica in Parentium was built in the middle of the 6th century and decorated with mosaics depicting the Theotokos flanked by angels and saints.
Fragments remain from the mosaics of the Church of Santa Maria Formosa in Pola. These pieces were made during the 6th century by artists from Constantinople. Their pure Byzantine style is different from the contemporary Ravennate mosaics.
Very few early Byzantine mosaics survived the Iconoclastic destruction of the 8th century. Among the rare examples are the 6th-century Christ in majesty (or Ezekiel’s Vision) mosaic in the apse of the Church of Hosios David in Thessaloniki that was hidden behind mortar during those dangerous times. Nine mosaic panels in the Hagios Demetrios Church, which were made between 634 and 730, also escaped destruction. Unusually almost all represent Saint Demetrius of Thessaloniki, often with suppliants before him.

St George as patron of two children – Mosaic, Church of St Demetrios in Thessaloniki

In the Iconoclastic era, figural mosaics were also condemned as idolatry. The Iconoclastic churches were embellished with plain gold mosaics with only one great cross in the apse like the Hagia Irene in Constantinople (after 740). There were similar crosses in the apses of the Hagia Sophia Church in Thessaloniki and in the Church of the Dormition in Nicaea. The crosses were substituted with the image of the Theotokos in both churches after the victory of the Iconodules (787–797 and in 8th–9th centuries respectively, the Dormition church was totally destroyed in 1922).
A similar Theotokos image flanked by two archangels was made for the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople in 867. The dedication inscription says: “The images which the impostors had cast down here pious emperors have again set up.” In the 870s the so-called large sekreton of the Great Palace of Constantinople was decorated with the images of the four great iconodule patriarchs.
The post-Iconoclastic era was the heyday of Byzantine art with the most beautiful mosaics executed. The mosaics of the Macedonian Renaissance (867–1056) carefully mingled traditionalism with innovation. Constantinopolitan mosaics of this age followed the decoration scheme first used in Emperor Basil I’s Nea Ekklesia. Not only this prototype was later totally destroyed but each surviving composition is battered so it is necessary to move from church to church to reconstruct the system.
An interesting set of Macedonian-era mosaics make up the decoration of the Hosios Loukas Monastery. In the narthex there is the Crucifixion, the Pantokrator and the Anastasis above the doors, while in the church the Theotokos (apse), Pentecost, scenes from Christ’s life and ermit St Loukas (all executed before 1048). The scenes are treated with a minimum of detail and the panels are dominated with the gold setting.

Detail of mosaic from Nea Moni Monastery

The Nea Moni Monastery on Chios was established by Constantine Monomachos in 1043–1056. The exceptional mosaic decoration of the dome showing probably the nine orders of the angels was destroyed in 1822 but other panels survived (Theotokos with raised hands, four evangelists with seraphim, scenes from Christ’s life and an interesting Anastasis where King Salomon bears resemblance to Constantine Monomachos). In comparison with Osios Loukas Nea Moni mosaics contain more figures, detail, landscape and setting.
Another great undertaking by Constantine Monomachos was the restoration of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem between 1042 and 1048. Nothing survived of the mosaics which covered the walls and the dome of the edifice but the Russian abbot Daniel, who visited Jerusalem in 1106–1107 left a description: “Lively mosaics of the holy prophets are under the ceiling, over the tribune. The altar is surmounted by a mosaic image of Christ. In the main altar one can see the mosaic of the Exhaltation of Adam. In the apse the Ascension of Christ. The Annunciation occupies the two pillars next to the altar.”
The Daphni Monastery houses the best preserved complex of mosaics from the early Comnenan period (ca. 1100) when the austere and hieratic manner typical for the Macedonian epoch and represented by the awesome Christ Pantocrator image inside the dome, was metamorphosing into a more intimate and delicate style, of which The Angel before St Joachim — with its pastoral backdrop, harmonious gestures and pensive lyricism — is considered a superb example.
The 9th- and 10th-century mosaics of the Hagia Sophia in Constantinople are truly classical Byzantine artworks. The north and south tympana beneath the dome was decorated with figures of prophets, saints and patriarchs. Above the principal door from the narthex we can see an Emperor kneeling before Christ (late 9th or early 10th century). Above the door from the southwest vestibule to the narthex another mosaic shows the Theotokos with Justinian and Constantine. Justinian I is offering the model of the church to Mary while Constantine is holding a model of the city in his hand. Both emperors are beardless – this is an example for conscious archaization as contemporary Byzantine rulers were bearded. A mosaic panel on the gallery shows Christ with Constantine Monomachos and Empress Zoe (1042–1055). The emperor gives a bulging money sack to Christ as a donation for the church.
The dome of the Hagia Sophia Church in Thessaloniki is decorated with an Ascension mosaic (c. 885). The composition resembles the great baptistries in Ravenna, with apostles standing between palms and Christ in the middle. The scheme is somewhat unusual as the standard post-Iconoclastic formula for domes contained only the image of the Pantokrator.

Mosaic of Christ Pantocrator from Hagia Sophia from the Deesis mosaic

There are very few existing mosaics from the Komnenian period but this paucity must be due to accidents of survival and gives a misleading impression. The only surviving 12th-century mosaic work in Constantinople is a panel in Hagia Sophia depicting Emperor John II and Empress Eirene with the Theotokos (1122–34). The empress with her long braided hair and rosy cheeks is especially capturing. It must be a lifelike portrayal because Eirene was really a redhead as her original Hungarian name, Piroska shows. The adjacent portrait of Emperor Alexios I Komnenos on a pier (from 1122) is similarly personal. The imperial mausoleum of the Komnenos dynasty, the Pantokrator Monastery was certainly decorated with great mosaics but these were later destroyed. The lack of Komnenian mosaics outside the capital is even more apparent. There is only a “Communion of the Apostles” in the apse of the cathedral of Serres.
A striking technical innovation of the Komnenian period was the production of very precious, miniature mosaic icons. In these icons the small tesserae (with sides of 1 mm or less) were set on wax or resin on a wooden panel. These products of extraordinary craftmanship were intended for private devotion. The Louvre Transfiguration is a very fine example from the late 12th century. The miniature mosaic of Christ in the Museo Nazionale at Florence illustrates the gentler, humanistic conception of Christ which appeared in the 12th century.
The sack of Constantinople in 1204 caused the decline of mosaic art for the next five decades. After the reconquest of the city by Michael VIII Palaiologos in 1261 the Hagia Sophia was restored and a beautiful new Deesis was made on the south gallery. This huge mosaic panel with figures two and a half times lifesize is really overwhelming due to its grand scale and superlative craftsmanship. The Hagia Sophia Deesis is probably the most famous Byzantine mosaic in Constantinople.
The Pammakaristos Monastery was restored by Michael Glabas, an imperial official, in the late 13th century. Only the mosaic decoration of the small burial chapel (parekklesion) of Glabas survived. This domed chapel was built by his widow, Martha around 1304–08. In the miniature dome the traditional Pantokrator can be seen with twelve prophets beneath. Unusually the apse is decorated with a Deesis, probably due to the funerary function of the chapel.
The Church of the Holy Apostles in Thessaloniki was built in 1310–14. Although some vandal systematically removed the gold tesserae of the background it can be seen that the Pantokrator and the prophets in the dome follow the traditional Byzantine pattern. Many details are similar to the Pammakaristos mosaics so it is supposed that the same team of mosaicists worked in both buildings. Another building with a related mosaic decoration is the Theotokos Paregoritissa Church in Arta. The church was established by the Despot of Epirus in 1294–96. In the dome is the traditional stern Pantokrator, with prophets and cherubim below.

Saint Peter mosaic from the Chora Church

The greatest mosaic work of the Palaeologan renaissance in art is the decoration of the Chora Church in Constantinople. Although the mosaics of the naos have not survived except three panels, the decoration of the exonarthex and the esonarthex constitute the most important full-scale mosaic cycle in Constantinople after the Hagia Sophia. They were executed around 1320 by the command of Theodore Metochites. The esonarthex has two fluted domes, specially created to provide the ideal setting for the mosaic images of the ancestors of Christ. The southern one is called the Dome of the Pantokrator while the northern one is the Dome of the Theotokos. The most important panel of the esonarthex depicts Theodore Metochites wearing a huge turban, offering the model of the church to Christ. The walls of both narthexes are decorated with mosaic cycles from the life of the Virgin and the life of Christ. These panels show the influence of the Italian trecento on Byzantine art especially the more natural settings, landscapes, figures.

Mosaic of Theodore Metochites offering the Chora Church to Christ

The last Byzantine mosaic work was created for the Hagia Sophia, Constantinople in the middle of the 14th century. The great eastern arch of the cathedral collapsed in 1346, bringing down the third of the main dome. By 1355 not only the big Pantokrator image was restored but new mosaics were set on the eastern arch depicting the Theotokos, the Baptist and Emperor John V Palaiologos (discovered only in 1989).
In addition to the large-scale monuments several miniature mosaic icons of outstanding quality was produced for the Palaiologos court and nobles. The loveliest examples from the 14th century are Annunciation in the Victoria and Albert Museum and a mosaic diptych in the Cathedral Treasury of Florence representing the Twelve Feasts of the Church.
In the troubled years of the 15th century the fatally weakened empire could not afford luxurious mosaics. Churches were decorated with wall-paintings in this era and after the Turkish conquest.

The extraordinary richness of Byzantine mosaics can be seen in this hand held video. Watch it and forgive the camera shakes – as it is the work of an enthusiast. The look of the art – the amazing mosaics – makes this short video worthwhile. This is what you would be looking at: “Byzantine mosaics depicting Bible scenes and Saint Peter at the Cathedral of Monreale near Palermo. Built by the Norman king of Sicily William II (the Good) between 1174 and 1182, Monreale is decorated with at least one million tesserae, the 130 individual mosaic scenes probably being created by artisans from Byzantium and/or local craftsmen working in that style.”

UKIYO – E

Last week we talked about woodcuts. This week we shall look at the Japanese art form called Ukiyo-e. Ukiyo-e is a style of Japanese woodblock prints and paintings that were made between the seventeenth and twentieth centuries. Translated, the term ukiyo-e literally means “pictures of the floating world.” In Japan the floating world referred to the world of the geisha—its beautiful women, theatre, and leisure, but the genre of ukiyo-e also included paintings of landscapes and history tales as well as reflections of the infamous pleasure quarters of the geisha.

Ukiyo-e was popular in Japan for its depictions of theatre and courtesans which offered an escape, if only in view, from the ordinary life. New developments in printing techniques allowed the ukiyo-e works to be mass produced so that by the middle of the seventeenth century they were immensely popular. Because the prints were easy to reproduce, they became affordable for everyday people. Thus, their popularity continued to increase with time. At times some of the more sexually provocative prints would earn their artist a punishment, but essentially these scenes of nature’s pleasures or the pleasures of the teahouses and brothels remained in favour.

Scholars of Asian art typically divide ukiyo-e into two periods: Edo and Meiji. The Edo period lasted from the 1620s to 1867 and witnessed a relatively calm development of the art form. The Meiji period lasted from 1867 to roughly 1912 and faced more turbulence and change with the influx of Western influences once Japan had opened itself up to the West. Ukiyo-e first developed at a time when Edo, or Tokyo, was becoming increasingly metropolitan in terms of its cultural development.

There were several steps involved in making traditional ukiyo-e prints. First a master artist rendered a drawing in ink. Next, a trained assistant would create a tracing from the original drawing. The tracing would be given to craftsmen who would glue it to a block of wood and cut any traces of white from the paper leaving a reverse print on the wood. The wood block would then be inked for making copies. The coloration process revolved around the use of multiple blocks for impressing the proper color schemes to the copies by using a relief method.

Some of the best known ukiyo-e artists include Hishikawa Moronobu, Utamaro, Sharaku, Hokusai, Hiroshige, Kunichika, and Yoshitoshi. The ukiyo-e prints began to go out of fashion in the early twentieth century. Photography and other print forms began to take precedence. However, ukiyo-e art had a profound effect on many Western artists such as Edgar Degas and Claude Monet. The prints directly influenced the West’s growing taste for Japonisme objects of art. The floating world prints influenced not only the Impressionists, but also the Cubists and Post-Impressionists.

For a peep into the world of Ukiyo-e making in practice, we have this video for you:

SABARI SMITHA GUHA NATH


SHABARI SMITHA NATH (b. 1978) received her Bachelor’s Degree in Painting from JNTU, Hyderabad and her Master’s Degree in Printmaking from Kala Bhavana, Santiniketan. She received the Gold Medal from JNTU for outstanding achievement in Painting. Nath’s works are full of texture and she loves to play with ambiguous spaces. Chances of accidents are relished at several points and incorporated into the image. She works with a few identifiable images and leaves her composition to an abrupt fate. She uses texts to enrich her surface and even uses random objects as motifs. These objects are transformed through the image and lose their associative context. They complement each other in the total design. There is a strong sense of displacement and a stronger urge of discovery. As a favourite object, the key appears in several prints. The key serves as an indicator to unrevealed secrets. Her lithographs are contrastingly colourful whereas the etchings have a muted colour scheme.
She is our Artist of The Month for September on the Early Works Art Gallery. See all her exhibited works in our Gallery section under Artists.

SABARI SMITHA GUHA NATH’S WORKS
Some of our Artist of The Month’s works are exhibited here. For a look at our complete collection of her art, please visit our website.





EVENTS IN CALCUTTA

Exhibition Of Paintings By Devi Rani Dasgupta

1st Sep – 30th Sep, 11:00am – 07:00pm
Emami Chisel Art Walk, Emami Tower, 687, 1st And 2nd Floor, Anandapur, In Emami Tower, E.M Bypass, East, Kolkata
Emami Chisel Art Walk presents solo exhibition of recent art works by Devirani Dasgupta, a renowned painter and artist. Do join in to watch the vibrant hues and colors painted by artist on canvas. Devi Rani Dasgupta is a self taught expressionist painter and is a graduate in zoology from B.B.R. Ambedkar University. Her painting has a unique style of surrealism and fantasy.

Outliers – Exhibition at Studio 21 by Graphic Artists Anirban Ghosh, Nilanjana Das and Ishita Chakraborty
18th Sep – 9th Oct, Studio 21, 17L , Dover Terrace Kolkata – 700019. Phone : (91) 33 2486 6735

Finding humour in everyday life, three graphic artists – Nilanjan Das, Anirban Ghosh and Ishita Chakraborty are jointly exhibiting their works at Studio 21.
Das has visualised Sukumar Ray’s creations of nonsensical characters from ‘Abol Tabol’; Ghosh offers up a collection of black-and-white and colour performance photographs interspersed with illustrations of expressive vegetables; Chakraborty presents what looks like a child’s art project full of miniature and matchbox artwork and knick-knacks.
The exhibition is on till October 9th.

MOSAICS (Continued)

We hope you have been following the fascinating and colourful story of mosaics through the ages in the last two weeks in our Art Techniques section that appears every Tuesday on our website and also on our facebook page. You can go back to refer to the earlier two weeks, in case you want to brush up on what has gone before.

Mosaics in Late Antiquity and Ancient Rome

Christian mosaic art also flourished in Rome, gradually declining as conditions became more difficult in the Early Middle Ages. 5th century mosaics can be found over the triumphal arch and in the nave of the basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore. The 27 surviving panels of the nave are the most important mosaic cycle in Rome of this period.

5th century mosaic in the triumphal arch of Santa Maria Maggiore, Rome

Two other important 5th century mosaics are lost but we know them from 17th-century drawings. In the apse mosaic of Sant’Agata dei Goti (462–472, destroyed in 1589) Christ was seated on a globe with the twelve Apostles flanking him, six on either side. At Sant’Andrea in Catabarbara (468–483, destroyed in 1686) Christ appeared in the center, flanked on either side by three Apostles. Four streams flowed from the little mountain supporting Christ. The original 5th-century apse mosaic of the Santa Sabina was replaced by a very similar fresco by Taddeo Zuccari in 1559. The composition probably remained unchanged: Christ flanked by male and female saints, seated on a hill while lambs drinking from a stream at its feet. All three mosaics had a similar iconography.
6th-century pieces are rare in Rome but the mosaics inside the triumphal arch of the basilica of San Lorenzo fuori le mura belong to this era.

Basilica of Saint Lawrence outside the Walls

The Chapel of Ss. Primo e Feliciano in Santo Stefano Rotondo, called the most beautiful church in Rome, has very interesting and rare mosaics from the 7th century. This chapel was built by Pope Theodore I as a family burial place.

Mosaic of Theodore Metochites offering the Chora Church to Christ – Chora_Church_interior

In the 7th–9th centuries Rome fell under the influence of Byzantine art, noticeable on the mosaics of Santa Prassede, Santa Maria in Domnica, Sant’Agnese fuori le Mura, Santa Cecilia in Trastevere, Santi Nereo e Achilleo and the San Venanzio chapel of San Giovanni in Laterano.

San Venanzio chapel of San Giovanni in Laterano

The great dining hall of Pope Leo III in the Lateran Palace was also decorated with mosaics. They were all destroyed later except for one example, the so-called Triclinio Leoniano of which a copy was made in the 18th century.

Lateran Palace – Triclinio Leoniano

Another great work of Pope Leo, the apse mosaic of Santa Susanna, depicted Christ with the Pope and Charlemagne on one side, and SS. Susanna and Felicity on the other. It was plastered over during a renovation in 1585. Pope Paschal I (817–824) embellished the church of Santo Stefano del Cacco with an apsidal mosaic which depicted the pope with a model of the church (destroyed in 1607).
The fragment of an 8th-century mosaic, the Epiphany is one of the very rare remaining pieces of the medieval decoration of Old St. Peter’s Basilica, demolished in the late 16th century. The precious fragment is kept in the sacristy of Santa Maria in Cosmedin. It proves the high artistic quality of the destroyed St. Peter’s mosaics.

Epiphany mosaic – Old St Peter’s Basilica

If you can forgive the amateurish video taken by an enthusiast of the Apse mosaic from Chapel of S. Venanzio, Baptistery of San Giovanni in Lateran, Rome, then here it is for you. Forget the camera shakes and glitches and concentrate on the mosaic. It speaks in a rich language of devotion and religious fervour of the age of antiquity.

WOODCUT


Also known as xylography, woodcut is a printmaking technique that uses relief printing to print an image. Printers carve images into a block of wood. Any areas that would show white are cut away along the grain of the wood. The remaining image is rolled with black (or another colour) and then essentially stamped onto a medium to reproduce the image. Japanese woodcut artists typically favoured a type of cherry wood for their carvings. In Europe beech wood was a popular choice for woodcuts.


Early Chinese woodcut

The first woodcuts appeared in China during the third century where the practice was referred to as ‘banhua’. Later the woodcut printing technique was used widely in both Europe and Japan. In China woodcuts were used most frequently with accompanying text. In this way, the technique functioned less as an art form than it did in Europe and China. Instead, the Chinese used woodcuts to reproduce Buddhist texts and other significant writings. Woodcut also served to make banknotes in China. China was also the first place to employ coloured prints made from woodblocks.

Albrecht_Dürer_-_Portrait_of_Michael_Wolgemut

By the year 1400, the woodcut technique was employed to make master prints. Many of these early woodcuts were crude and sold cheaply. However, the German printmaker Michael Wolgemut successfully enhanced the woodcut process by 1475 and with advances by other printers, the woodcut form achieved a higher degree of image-making. Used for book illustrating, the western woodcut print achieved its most respected level of artistry through the work of Albrecht Durer who was born in 1471; many critics believe his skill has never been surpassed in the west.

Nevertheless, the artistry of the woodcut reached its popular zenith in Japan where the woodblock technique was used to reproduce the floating world of the Japanese geisha. This form of woodblock printing was known as ‘ukiyo-e’ which developed out of the earlier ‘moku hanga’ form. The woodblock cuts of Japan and Iran reached sophisticated and technically superior levels. While a respected art form during this period in history, it was seen as inferior to painting. However, these old woodcuts became highly collectible during the twentieth century and are still prized today.

In both Europe and Japan the design of the woodcut was made by the artist and the actual carving was performed by a skilled craftsman known as block-cutter. During the early twentieth century many artists engaged in the entire process themselves. Other famous artists who worked with woodcuts include Hokusai (1760-1849), M.C. Escher (1898-1972), Hishikawa Moronobu (1618-1694), Werner Drewes (1899-1985), Urs Grad (1485-c.1529), and Utamaro (c.1753-1806).

This simple video shows you seven steps of making a woodcut print:

PARTHA BANIK


Partha Banik is a promising product of the Govt College of Art & Craft, Agartala, Tripura, where he took his Bachelor’s degree in Fine Art in Painting. He then went on to the Chamarajendra Academy of Visual Art in Mysore for his Master’s degree.
He has already been exhibited in the Kochi Muzurus Biennale in 2014-15, in ‘Fragrances of the North-East in Guwahati in 2015, at Khajuraho Art Mart in 2015, at Fresh Marks Group Exhibition of Painting and Performance, and at Rabindra Parisad every year from 2012 to 2015.

ABOUT PARTHA BANIK’S WORK
Partha Banik, the young painter, likes to deal in simple thoughts and play with them for inspiration. He does not like to stick to a signature style and is constantly experimenting to find expression for his free ranging ideas. This makes his works very dissimilar from one another. He does not believe in the overuse of colours and objects and wants to get his feeling across with the minimal of artifice. He also believes that words are images and therefore uses words in his paintings.

His is very close to his family and draws great inspiration from his parents. Partha cites modern media of films, commercials, television and even political posters as his influences. He takes interest in life around him, in psychology and philosophy, and the simple interaction of people chatting tea stalls.









EVENTS IN DELHI


Katha
10th Sep – 7th Oct, 11:00am – 08:00pm
Gallerie Nvya, A 29 Friends Colony East, Near Cambridge School, New Friends Colony, South, Delhi NCR
Katha, a group art exhibition showcasing artworks of promising emerging artists like Amit Kumar, Bhartti Verma, Bhuwal Prasad, Dipankar, Pramanik, Grishma Khodaria, Khushboo, Upadhyay, Mainza Bano, Manjot Kaur among others.

Divine Glimpses
14th Sep – 18th Sep, 11:00am – 07:00pm
India Habitat Centre, Habitat World, Institutional Area, Foyer, Max Muller Marg, Near Air Force Bal Bharti Public School, Lodhi Road, South, Delhi NCR
Artist Yograj Verma in his upcoming collection, Divine Glimpses, brings out the incredible incarnations of almighty to uphold the concept of the divine and myths in the present scenario.

What The Eyes Can See
11th Sep – 16th Sep, 11:00am – 07:00pm
India Habitat Centre, Habitat World, Institutional Area, Foyer, Max Muller Marg, Near Air Force Bal Bharti Public School, Lodhi Road, South, Delhi NCR
Kota Neelima in her latest collection, What the Eyes Can See, continues her inquiry into causation by contemporary and critical understanding of questions from ancient Indian texts.

The artist follows an elaborate process of making the works, which begins with extensive research of texts, followed by charcoal drawings on paper, before finally converting them to oil paintings.

MOSAICS (Continued from last week)

Christian mosaic
Early Christian art

Good Shepherd mosaic in the Mausoleum of Galla Placidia, Ravenna

With the building of Christian basilicas in the late 4th century, wall and ceiling mosaics were adopted for Christian uses. The earliest examples of Christian basilicas have not survived, but the mosaics of Santa Constanza and Santa Pudenziana, both from the 4th century, still exist. The winemaking putti in the ambulatory of Santa Constanza still follow the classical tradition in that they represent the feast of Bacchus, which symbolizes transformation or change, and are thus appropriate for a mausoleum, the original function of this building.

Bethlehem Church of the Nativity – main nave

In another great Constantinian basilica, the Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem the original mosaic floor with typical Roman geometric motifs is partially preserved. The so-called Tomb of the Julii, near the crypt beneath St Peter’s Basilica, is a 4th-century vaulted tomb with wall and ceiling mosaics that are given Christian interpretations. The Rotunda of Galerius in Thessaloniki, converted into a Christian church during the course of the 4th century, was embellished with very high artistic quality mosaics. Only fragments survive of the original decoration, especially a band depicting saints with hands raised in prayer, in front of complex architectural fantasies.

Church of San Giovanni Evangelista

In the following century Ravenna, the capital of the Western Roman Empire, became the centre of late Roman mosaic art. Milan also served as the capital of the western empire in the 4th century. In the St Aquilinus Chapel of the Basilica of San Lorenzo, mosaics executed in the late 4th and early 5th centuries depict Christ with the Apostles and the Abduction of Elijah; these mosaics are outstanding for their bright colours, naturalism and adherence to the classical canons of order and proportion. The surviving apse mosaic of the Basilica of Sant’Ambrogio, which shows Christ enthroned between Saint Gervasius and Saint Protasius and angels before a golden background date back to the 5th and to the 8th century, although it was restored many times later. The baptistery of the basilica, which was demolished in the 15th century, had a vault covered with gold-leaf tesserae, large quantities of which were found when the site was excavated. In the small shrine of San Vittore in ciel d’oro, now a chapel of Sant’Ambrogio, every surface is covered with mosaics from the second half of the 5th century. Saint Victor is depicted in the centre of the golden dome, while figures of saints are shown on the walls before a blue background. The low spandrels give space for the symbols of the four Evangelists.
Albingaunum was the main Roman port of Liguria. The octagonal baptistery of the town was decorated in the 5th century with high quality blue and white mosaics representing the Apostles. The surviving remains are somewhat fragmented.
A mosaic pavement depicting humans, animals and plants from the original 4th-century cathedral of Aquileia has survived in the later medieval church. This mosaic adopts pagan motifs such as the Nilotic scene, but behind the traditional naturalistic content is Christian symbolism such as the ichthys. The 6th-century early Christian basilicas of Sant’ Eufemia it:Basilica di Sant’Eufemia (Grado) and Santa Maria delle Grazie in Grado also have mosaic floors.
In the next week we shall look at Late Antique and Early Medieval Rome and their contribution to the art of Mosaics.

Here is a video about mosaic art from the artist Sonia King, where she talks about her craft: