Page 4 - Anjolie Ela Menon - Inner Vision
P. 4


                                                                                                                                                                  VICKRAM SETHI

                                                                                                                                                                                       The art of Anjolie Ela Menon
                                                                                                                                                                                       bears witness to one of the
                                                                                                                                                                                       most creative minds of the
                                                                                                                                                                                       post-Independence era. So
                                                                                                                                                                                       expansive is her imagina-
                                                                                                                                                                                       tion that she managed to
                                                                                                                                                                                       redefine  art  on  her  own
                                                                                                                                                                                       terms  and  in  her  own
                                                                                                                                                                                       language,    creating   a
                                                                                                                                                                                       unique visual vocabulary
                                                                                                                                                                  that eludes easy translation or categorisation. Her
                                                                                                                                                                  output may be counted among the most inventive
                                                                                                                                                                  and diverse of her era, not only in style but also in
                                                                                                                                                                  selection of the medium. Few artists from her
                                                                                                                                                                  generation have used such a vast variety of mate-
                                                                                                                                                                  rials, from oil painting to glass sculpture to lithogra-
                                                                                                                                                                  phy to found objects, assemblage, digital paintings,
                                                                                                                                                                  jewellery, jharokhas and kitsch.

                                                                                                                                                                  Behind the inventive and exuberant paintings of
                                                                                                                                                                  what at first sight appears to be a random, unruly,
                                                                                                                                                                  and even eccentric style of work, lies the genius of
                                                                                                                                                                  Anjolie Ela Menon. Her perspicacity, her reclusive-
                                                                                                                                                                  ness, her unquiet mind, her ever-vigilant discrimi-
                                                                                                                                                                  nating gaze make her one of the most celebrated
                                                                                                                                                                  artists of India. For her, the creative process is a
                                                                                                                                                                  ritual act - an act which presupposes both order

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