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Whispering Torsos – Loud Motion

SANGEETA KUMARI

Torsos communicate the physical and mental being of a woman, of substance which she carries in the aura of her personality with esteem. In the anatomy of a woman the torso is the most vital part that cages emotions, sensuality, sensitivities and is probably the most attractive. Kanchan’s torsos are headless and limbless; this is a deliberate exclusion to emphasize and treat the object as the subject, henceforth giving her the liberty to experiment with extensions and additions of forms other than the torso.

Kanchan Chander is a face in the Indian art scene that almost everyone is familiar with. This ace artist, with her ‘never say die’ spirit, compassionate attitude and a smile on her face has made a journey of her own. She has been written about by several well know curators and art critics. Her paintings, drawings, mixed media on canvas and paper, installations and sculptures form ripples of a unique charisma to engage art connoisseurs to feel their essence. After an active quiescent of six years, exclusively working on torsos for the past two decades gave inception to that which has been recently concluded in bold satirical solo show titled Whispering Torsos at Visual Arts Gallery in New Delhi.

Torsos communicate the physical and mental being of a woman, of substance which she carries in
the aura of her personality with esteem. In the anatomy of a woman the torso is the most vital part that cages emotions, sensuality, sensitivities and is probably the most attractive. Kanchan’s torsos are headless and limbless; this is a deliberate exclusion to emphasize and treat the object as the subject, henceforth giving her the liberty to experiment with extensions and additions of forms other than the torso. The retrieved desires that were present once upon a time – anger, rage, lust and betrayal are now replaced by the poised celebration of experiences aesthetically portrayed in this installation of torsos; draped by assemblage of paper collages from magazines cuttings, wrapping papers, stickers and laces and embellished with sequins and Swarovski. As life unfurled each day for Kanchan, the torsos gently evolved. Earlier installations consisted of minimal, monumental kitsch material, with sparse decorative motifs. But as years went by, these torsos became more intricately adorned with decorative motifs which were vibrant and refreshing; they arrested forms of the torso using different mediums so naturally. The work resonates her style and all the tedious intricate detailing surrenders to perfection. “I too wanted to dress up and look good after a long time” says Kanchan. The Torso installations are among the several highlights of the show Whispering Torsos – very bold & funky, they come alive with vibrant colors.

Kanchan’s paintings are full of textured lines – subtly depicting semi abstraction and her journey encapsulates her ongoing time line; from where she began to how she now believes in engaging her subject before breathing life into them with all kinds of mixed media objects found at home, on streets and local bazaars. Influenced by the works of the much celebrated Mexican artist Frida Kahlo and the cinema, makes Kanchan revisit the actress in her, time and again. The embellishing and applying of layers upon layers of paint gives Kanchan a meditative and therapeutic solace. Ensuring all art elements – composition, tonality, lines, colors, mediums and placements are summarized with precision. Her thought process is more human and intuitive as she continues to work.

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