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Call of the Hills - paintings & sketches in the hills

- Deepak Ghare


Article by Deepak Ghare

Chitra Vaidya is a Landscape Artist, who held her first exhibition of the series "Call of the Hills" in 2012. The topic of her art was landscape of Western Ghat. This second exhibition portrays the nature of Himalaya mountainous region at Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand, their public life and culture. Chitra Vaidya is well known for her proficiency in water colouring. The speciality of this exhibition is in her trouble-free handling oil colours, mixed mediums and Charcoal. Also the diversity of mediums and displaying the public life blended in nature are also characteristic marks of this exhibition.


The timeless beauty and mystique of the Himalaya had been attracted numerous individuals, where Nikalus Roric was prime one of them. Chitra Vaidya has portrayed in her art the varying according to light the colour-combinations of the Himalaya ranges, limitless space and the patterns deriving from them. Some of the landscapes are caring for tradition of authenticity and beauty. These pictures are adorned with flowers-leaves, hill ranges at background and some twisty path and some human figures.


Chitra Vaidya has tried in some of her pictures to go beyond this conceptualization. Comparing the drawing and oil painting of the same subject "Village on a Hill Slope", we realize not only the difference of mediums but also two different sentimentalities. The picture drawn with mere black lines/strokes seems neutral/stable and controlled. A very mind blowing drawing is created with the help of simple strokes and various textures. Specially, the lines going toward lighter shades and merging into the horizon give an idea about the three dimensional form and it is the special feature of her well-born art. On the contrary, the picture in oil paints, due to its colour-combination gives the impression of dramatic and inclined towards super-realistic style. Especially, the yellowish muddy colour of the sky gives a different dimension to this piece of art.


The summits of the Himalaya painted with mixed medium in "Kumaun Mountains" illustrate the abstracts. Instead of usual perspective coming out of the various colours and textures we can experience the shaped space where there is combination of firmness of shape and flowing time.


Actually nature is an autonomous and self-born entity that turns into a different identity after the human culture touch. It bears a cultural face. Some art work caring for human culture in Himachal Pradesh is exhibited here. Some of them are still drawings, whereas some related to religious culture as well as architectural. For example, in "Temple in Himachal Pradesh" and "St. Mary’s Church" we can see the tapering tile-roofs, use of wood in construction, particular interior atmosphere in the Church. In the Still- drawings tea - kettle, tea cups, burning stove and no human figure reveal the human culture. In these pictures the gray colour creates gloomy impression but encouraging orange colour of the flames makes the art prominent.


“Call of the Hills” means a call for spirit in the form of ‘Nature’. It echoes delightfully through the art of Chitra Vaidya.


Marathi version of this article

Profile of artist Chitra Vaidya

See paintings by Chitra Vaidya

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