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Keywords: Professional Artists, Emerging Artists, Paintings, Children's Art

Climate Change - Profile

by Prakash Bal Joshi



Artist Prakash Bal Joshi Paintings, ink-drawings, sketches and installations by "Prakash Bal Joshi , Mumbai based artist, reflect a recurring theme—the transient nature of life and the Nature itself.


Joshi's creations go beyond, what he calls the outer look of various animate and inanimate objects that populate this planet, and try to reveal the layers of subtle nature lying underneath their visual forms. Thus the buildings, streets, trees, bushes, lakes, rivers and myriad other objects he paints based on his impressions assume mystical aura about themselves. His ink or pen-on- paper sketches and drawings portray massive changes in the urban landscape brought on by development that reflect two self-contradictory movements —rise in material comforts and fall in values. Some of them show in subdued hues human emotions like love and disillusionment while a few others simply convey the complications of human mind through a series of mazes. They reflect deeper understanding of contemporary life in metropolis.


Using oil on canvas, Joshi's powerful brush strokes bring alive through abstract forms the subtle realities that lie behind the outer look of different objects like buildings, streets, trees, bushes, hills, lakes, rivers and the seas with humans and creatures populating these places. "For me, painting is a spontaneous process. I let my inner turmoil and the creative response it triggers guides my expressions on canvas. At the root of all this is the quest who I am, why I am here and where I am going," he says.


Veteran artist feels a mysterious spiritual connect with rivers—something that seems to stem from his childhood tryst with swimming in a river which almost ended in his drowning. He evocatively uses river as a visual metaphor in his works to portray the flow of life, and the loss he feels when he thinks of many rivers that have been lost due to ravages of Time. His most enduring interest, bordering almost on obsession, is the disappearance of the mythical River Saraswati, on whose banks ancient sages are believed to have composed the great Vedas in India.


Joshi is an accomplished wordsmith, who has published two collections of short stories depicting the changing life in bustling megapolis that is Mumbai. A writer with a sharp eye, he reflects in his works the transitional nature of human life and the Nature itself. Breath-taking transformation of urban landscape, with attendant rise in material well-being and fall in values weigh on his mind.


So does the continual degradation of environment, and the Nature's way of reviving itself-- first through destruction and then through regeneration. Joshi's rendition of these feelings through abstract forms offers his inner, deeper philosophical perception of subtle realities behind different objects around us. "Words and images are inseparable part of my life for as long as I can remember. It is through the constantly interplay between these two in my mind that I express myself on canvas," says Joshi.


Destruction of environment through human greed leading to climatic changes also forms a powerful narrative in Joshi's paintings. They show how the Nature goes through the cycle of creation, destruction and creation again.


All of Joshi's creations, he confesses, are spontaneous reflections of the turmoil he feels within over Existence and the purpose of his own part in it. "For me, art is a spiritual quest that connects me with the whole universe," he says.


Joshi has held solo shows and participated in group exhibitions in India, the U.S and Europe. He has worked for over three decades as a journalist for many of India's prestigious newspapers and magazines, including The Times of India, which, he believes, provided him a window to the world.


Select participation by artist Prakash Bal Joshi

  • Kala Ghoda Arts Festival Mumbai 2013 - art installation – Coal Block
  • India Art Festival 2012 Mumbai – installation – "God Particle" showcasing latest work on canvas
  • Art Basel, Switzerland - 2012 (biggest art festival in Europe) - exhibition of work on canvas
  • Participation in Whasup – art festival at Lokhandwala complex, Andheri, Mumbai. Art installation Mumbai Facebook 2012 depicting how people living in metropolis like Mumbai become faceless.
  • Participation in Kala Ghoda Arts Festival 2012, Mumbai – hanging installation of a Hand Cart as a symbol of human endeavor.
  • Nibru will also pass – an exhibition of paintings at Art Buy Appointment Gallery at Juhu, Mumbai - 2012
  • Participation in India Art Festival -2011, Nehru Centre in Mumbai
  • Worlds within World – Bajaj Art Gallery 2011 exhibition presented by Mumbai ARt Kollective (MARK)
  • Solo show at Hotel Leela Kempanski , Bangalore in June 2011 organised by Indiaart Gallery on the occasion of the World Environment Day .
  • Inaugurated by Smt. Sumitra Gandhi Kulkarni, grand-daughter of Mahatma Gandhi
  • Solo show of PBJ art work at Colorida Art Gallery, Lisbon, Portugal for one month –November 2010
  • Artfest 2010 organized by Indiaart Gallery at Empress Garden, Pune to mark World Environment Day. Participated in live demonstration of painting.
  • Las Vegas International Exhibition of select artists February 2010 at the Southern Nevada Museum of Fine Art.The museum authorities decided to include PBJ's art work in permanent collection
  • A group of authors, photographers and artists undertake to record life in Dharavi- the biggest slum in Asia in central Mumbai. The slum will be demolished to make way for high-rise towers. PBJ participated in the Dharavi documentation project 2010
  • PBJ's art work exhibited at the Kalaghoda festival Mumbai -2010
  • Art work selected for IV Biennial of Coruche, Portugal -2009
  • Online exhibition World Water Day 2009 recorded on the UN website along with important events of the Day initiated by Indiaart Gallery.
  • Two-week solo exhibition "Subtle Changes" at Indiaart Gallery, Pune -2009.
  • Art auction for Children of Malavai, Auction conducted by noted curator Erik Throstvedt, Norway - 20009
  • Women & Water Rights: Rivers of Regeneration, Minneapolis University, USA 2008
  • Participation in the international group show organized by Galerija Vernissage, Osjik, Croatia -2009
  • Artist Center members group show-2009
  • "Subtle Changes" solo exhibition of art work depicting impact of climatic changes on environment as well as human behaviour.Exhibition at Kitab Mahal, Mumbai was launched by artist Nawaz Singhania while personal website published by Maharashtra Governor S.C.Jamir 2008.
  • Participated in group show Explicit -Implicit at Bangalore Gallery G - 2008
  • Artist Centre group show 2008
  • Artist Centre group show 2006
  • Gateway exhibition of paintings and sketches launched by then Maharashtra CM Shri Vilasrao Deshmukh and renowned editor Kumar Ketkar - 2006