Rising mist, an unsettling fog, rain washed streets, this and more all set against the backdrop of very commonplace, urban structures is what most works of renowned artist Atul Gendle look like.
The plaster peeling off a building, the play of shadows under the window, the glow of a street lamp at night, all seem to be very special to this Artist who recreates real life moments using watercolors. One hardly finds a dramatic effort to splash the canvas with a riot of colors and with just a handful of subdued shades, the young artist who is drawn to the works of Sargent, Rembrandt and SH Raza amongst others, easily captures on his board, life’s mundane scenes. In most of his works one finds the pleasant coming together of the static and dynamic elements of life, for instance large concrete structures overlooking busy streets people walking by the side of an ancient mansion with an imperious silence or perhaps a boat by the Ghats and so on.
The journey of this 26 year old artist in art began in a small village in India, at a very young age inspired by his uncle who was also a painter. However his decision to pursue art as a career after completing his education met with a lot of resentment at home as his father who served the Government and the rest of his family could not digest the fact that he wished to choose a different career. Atul recalls this stage as being one of the greatest challenges in his career. Nevertheless, he continued to paint and over time, the resentment within the family ended and they extended their support to his growth and today Atul is an internationally acclaimed artist who not only holds a master’s degree in fine arts coupled with an Art teacher diploma, but is also the recipient of many prestigious awards including the National Award of Art Society of India in 2017. This covetous award remains the most unforgettable experience in his life, thereafter he exhibited at the Jehangir Art Gallery in Mumbai and in 2018 the Maharashtra state government recognized his talent by awarding him. With more than 30 awards, Atul says it is his black and white color style that has clinched him these accolades. He has conducted many demonstrations in many parts of the Country and also participated in innumerable solos and group exhibitions across the Country. He also exhibited two of his paintings in Albania through the International Watercolor Society that selected his works for their international watercolor exhibition of 2017. Apart from this, Atul’s paintings are hugely sought after for their realistic charm and subtle play of colours and many of his works appear in collections in India, London and Europe.
With most of his day spent painting, he finds it unimaginable to spend a day without soaking his hands and mind in the magic of paint, literally. Like for most devout artists, Atul finds it very hard to verbalize what painting means to him. He categorically says he can only compare it to the breathing process. While his creations are very exquisite with a magical play of light, shade and hues, the process is straightforward. When asked to speak about the process he was quick to say, “I choose a location to paint and once there I choose a spot to paint. I then make a few rough sketches. And then I make a final drawing. Following this I start painting in watercolour which happens to be my favourite medium. After the first wash I let it dry and then I start to paint the details of the spot”.
Ask him where he sees himself in 10 years from now in the Art industry and all that he says is that he does not think about it and he just continues to put in all his effort into creating paintings for he believes it is hard-work and talent that can bring you opportunities and take you up the ladder in the field. While he may not necessarily plan the future, he certainly has a message for the art loving younger generation who do not have the confidence to take up art as a career option and that is to boldly pursue their interest putting in their best efforts. He nurtures a dream and that is to be able to stretch the dimensions of art possibilities within society and help people understand the value of art.