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An unending colloquy with nature – Raghu Neware
Arts Speak

An unending colloquy with nature – Raghu Neware

Divya Menon

Raghu Neware, internationally acclaimed Indian artist is a name synonymous with Nature, and why? He does not replicate the marvels of nature on canvas, but by virtue of his close association with nature, he creates abstracts drenched in the soul of nature - works that showcase her tints, hues and moods. In many ways, he acts as a conduit between viewers and nature through his creations that narrate the internal dialogues within her, enticing viewers to soak in her shades. The sun, light, wind, earth, all seem to have something to say. And yet, one does not always find a leaf or a flower in his works.

An unending colloquy with nature – Raghu Neware

Nature is forever in a state of flux; her tints are constantly changing, so also her texture. And this is a magic that nature unfailingly weaves from dawn till dusk. Having spent nearly six years in the jungle of Chandrapur, near the Tadoba Andhari Tiger Reserve, Raghu had the opportunity to interact with nature and observe her from within close quarters. The years spent in the woods exposed him to technical aspects of the transition of colours in nature and this naturally sharpened his observation and expanded his artistry. He says, “I spent many hours each day in the company of nature and watched and listened to her as she revealed her essence through her changing colours and textures and this made me receptive to her many moods and I began to portray them on canvas”. In his works one finds the dominance of hues like crimson, vermillion, orange, black, golden, yellow and other warm tints. These depict the many faces of nature as witnessed by him.

An unending colloquy with nature – Raghu Neware

He talks about different stages in his life when there was a 'paucity' of resources that often made it very hard to pursue his academics in Fine Arts but making use of easily available colours and mediums in nature he travelled against trying situations. He says, “I used coal tar for black colour, earth colours and bamboo sticks for brush and continued to experiment”. Thus his natural inquisitiveness and experimentation became the foundation on which he erected his powerful practice of art inspired by nature.

Born in Nagpur, he completed his BFA and MFA in painting from the Nagpur University. He has held 9 solo shows across India, in USA and Australia. He has also participated in about 25 national and international art camps including an International Graphic Art Camp in Khairagarh in 2018. In 2019 he won the Eminent Artist Award at the International Art Festival in Ujjain, apart from several other awards and fellowships. His works can be found in many corporate and private collections within India and abroad.

An unending colloquy with nature – Raghu Neware

He adds that as a child what influenced him most was photography which was the family business. The technical aspects of photography and photo processing in the traditional ways of the past helped him master space and balance aspects of art. Moreover, he was drawn towards the black and white movies of Guru Dutt, Balraj Sahni and Bimal Roy; the play of light and shadow being sacrosanct to the black and white era, enriched his acute sensibility towards these elements.

It has been more than three decades now that this Artist has been nature’s closest ally, engaged in an unending colloquy, creating art drawing inspiration from within her womb. Nature is perhaps the greatest muse ever, a perennial source of motivation; and reading into the magnificent canvasses of Raghu Neware, this conviction is what one derives.