About Gautam Paul:
Even when I was just a child, I always felt a natural liking for drawings, photographs, paintings: the shapes and colours.
It was in the year 1990 that I took B.V.A. degree from the Govt. College of Art and Craft. At the very outset of my career I chose to work in the field of advertisement and felt like spending my entire life in that province. And I was hardly even a dream then to have my own paintings displayed in the mode and manner of exhibition.
1997! The year I lost my beloved father, I was left with my whole foundation of existence shaken, and my mind and soul devastated. But time changes and wounds get healed up in the due course of time. I did once again regain my sunshine, and this time I focused primarily on the social atrocities of the rich and the powerful and the influential. But I was compelled to accept my defeat at the ruthless hands of these murderers of humanity.
And to give vent to my inmost agony I deployed colours, shapes, and forms; not merely to express my feelings but to protest against the sanguinary metaphors of life.
I can still recall how, during lessons, my teachers always wanted the students to “bring out the brightness, the brilliance; and focus on the premier aspects”. As a beginner in this field I myself realized that the more I made certain areas in the canvas darker, the brighter other parts would become. This game of contrast had since then become not just my obsession but a phenomenal instrument in my art. I literally fell in love with “darkness”: an indomitable urge in the depths of my heart to romance darkness in paintings. When I started working as an artist, I started construing greed, lust, vengeance, love-for-excessive-power, illiteracy, and other immoral iniquities as social darkness. And I started feeling that mine is a “Quest for Darkness”, and I made it my religion. I feel my identity getting seriously threatened when a mere speck of thought strikes me hard regarding what it would all be like if ever the still dubiously extant balance between “light” and “darkness” in the mind of human beings get disturbed and badly shaken. I believe that only the direst of consequences would follow, and/but every [other] innocent and beautiful creature would have to bear the brunt for human atrocities.
Is it not a miracle that we are born on a small planet in this colossal universe? Is it not that so long we live and breathe we can perceive the light, the shade, the darkness with the gift of consciousness?
The great poet Rabindranath Tagore did once observe that “Light emerges from the very source of Night”. Just as we do finally kiss the undiscovered summit of success after diligently traversing the steep and rugged uphill journey involving sincere labour and honesty, love and faith and confidence, we do also see LIGHT at the end of impenetrable Darkness. I do believe that we need both Light and Darkness as essential ingredients of consciousness in general, and existence in particular. However, it is an innate paradox that we do only appreciate Light for it aids our normal vision, and we do happily treat the other half of the inseparable binary with utmost indifference, and its real features, its innate glory and importance stays unknown, unacknowledged.
In our life there is a very narrow alley that is essentially GREY in hue for it stands between the immaculate white and the pitchy black. And this is one way I love to love life like. And I do believe that it is there in that dubious shade that human life plays freely with all its lust, love, piety and dubiety: the very essence of the breathe that we inhale and the tears we shade. We live while gradually shifting from one side of light to the other side of the dark like dazed beings forever seeking to live and live and live. And herein lies the incessant quest of us all to push the human civilization further more [to what we know not]. We human beings do all suffer from some form of identity crisis at every moment. It stays an indomitable quest on our part to establish our presence and demand that the ‘you’ do say that “I am alive!”…[.]
To me, Life is a test to prove one’s own self to another thinking mind. […]
In my sketch-book I scribble a lot and they take shapes quite unconsciously. This happens almost unknowingly, and as a necessary consequence my works are somehow distant from the necessary [real] perspective. None of my works are premeditated, and so they are so “unreal realities”. And yet they d not negate the feeling reality. But in my unconscious I do touch the stone of sense that my silent works are eloquent: the noise these childish colours make cannot subdue the silence of the southern waves…[.]
For me harmony lies in even in noise; and beauty in the absurd.
This is the first time I am exhibiting my works in Kolkata at Academy of Fine Arts. Prior to this event, there had been two ‘solo’ exhibitions conducted in England: At “The Royal Tunbridge Wells Library Museum and Art Gallery” in 2010, and at “Hastings Arts Forums” in the year 2012.
I feel blessed being a human being for I can imbibe in the exquisite essence of Nature with all its lovely hues, tastes, smells, rhythms: the essential feel of beauty and life. My religion is to seek the “Unknown” out by delving deep into the perceptible world with all my senses active and ready…[.]
- B. V. A. Passed in the year 1989 from the Govt. College of Art & Craft, Under University of Calcutta.
Artistic Experience including number of years studying and working:
- Certificate of Merit Award for calendar 1988-89
- Award for outstanding work for poster design 1989-90
- Illustrator cum Visualizer under Ogilvy & Mather 1991-98
- Participated in the Birla Academy of Art & Culture Annual Exhibition in 2008, 2009 at Kolkata.
- Participated in the Academy Annual Exhibition in 1993, 2008, 2009 at Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata.
- Participated in the Workshop organized by Indian National Forum of Art and Culture, 2006-2007.
- Participated in the Charukala Barsik Pradarshani O Utsav in 2008 & 2009 organized by Govt. of West Bengal at Kolkata.
- Participated in a Group Exhibition at Birla Academy of Art & Culture in 2009 at Kolkata.
- Participated in Solo Exhibition 2010 in Royal Tunbridge Wells Library Museum and Art Gallery, Civic Centre - Mount Pleasant - Royal Tunbridge Wells - TN1 1JN
- Participated in solo exhibition 2012 in Hastings Arts Forums East Sussex England.
- Paintings collect by Private collector Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad & UK.