“Painting is a conversation between me and my canvas” - Divyaman Singh
At the Open Palm Court in Delhi, an exhibition titled Illusions will commence tomorrow. And in this Show, alongside great names like Jatin Das, F.N.Souza and S.H. Raza, a few other artists like Divyaman Singh - the Zamindar-Artist from Bihar will also put up his two magnificent works titled Earth and Sky, both, oil on canvas works created using his bare hands. A peep into the artist's studio reveals that these two works that artfully convey the interplay of shades through texture also showcase the subtle inventiveness of their creator!
Not very long ago, there was a time when all his paintings were excerpts from his own chaotic journey of life.
The inner conflicts of man and the turbulence within him, his attempt to conquer his various fears, his camaraderie with animals and so on were some of the themes very close to the heart of Divyaman Singh.
Thundering fall and a resolute man is an intense painting in which a mighty waterfall is thought of as a soothing factor that silences the inner disturbances of a man standing at its foot. In Uncharted Depths one finds the grainy image of a man rowing his boat through foggy waters. The boat represents his confused mind and the muddy water is symbolic of the trials and tribulations of life in this world. And then there is Companionship, yet another oil on canvas work where in the wilderness a little boy is shown playing with a wolf. This work denotes his endeavor to salvage his intrinsic bond with nature; a connection that has long been sabotaged by the pace of life.
In all these works one finds a resolute effort on his part to draw deep connections between nature and himself. Juxtaposing human figures besides nature, the artist in his earlier days tried to negotiate a bond with nature, one that continues to be jeopardised by life's anarchy to this day! There is deep pain woven into the lines of these works. The colours narrate the struggles of the artist, they showcase his emotions, fears and myriad other thoughts. Those were trying days and each ouevre stands as a historical testimony of his life until then.
He dabbles mostly in oil paint as that is his favourite medium. He says, "I started painting scenaries and human figures in nature but now I am a full time abstractionist who paints textures" and shockingly, he achieves this using his hands, elbows and feet apart from brush etc!
He adds, "I like to display the depth of colours, the moods of colours, the feel, emotions, shades of colours, the texture of colours and often relate them with the life events of people"!
He is a self-taught artist who inherited art genes from his maternal grandfather through his mother, both of whom had incomplete trysts with art. However, Divyaman who started sketching while in school and college painted using watercolours for eight years before joining his father in Mumbai after college, when and where art suffered a set-back as the young artist found himself trapped in the fleeting charms of the material world. What followed were passive fifteen years when art went into absolute dormancy in his life, till he met his wife Mehak. Talking about how art came back into his life, he narrates an incident, "I wanted to gift her something on her birthday and finances were rather low and that is when it struck me that I could gift her a painting by me and I went ahead and gifted her a brand new work and since that day I have never stopped painting".
He doesnt believe that art degrees are a necessity to produce art in one's chosen style as every style is born within the mind and soul of the creator and degrees have very little to do with it. However, to understand colour tones and compositions of art, it is good to learn art.
Together with his wife, Divyaman runs an art gallery in Noida called ART BY DIVYAMAN Studio & Gallery where he holds shows of lesser known artists as a gesture of solidarity.
He says his 'up and down' journey this far has been great and eventful and what he portrays as art is a silent message of the various landscapes he has traversed across the larger canvas called life. He adds, "At one time I wandered in search of happiness but today I am content. There is peace deep within me and I feel this joy is what is reflected in my works these days. The journey has been worth the while".
The trajectory of Divyaman reveals and reinforces one of the greatest truths of the art world that an artist paints his own story using hues born simply within his very soul!