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Painting Exhibition of Two Young Artists

A week-long exhibition of paintings by two young artists Baldev Panwar (Solan, Himachal Pradesh) and Gurpreet Singh (Mansa, Punjab) opened in the International Roerich Memorial Trust, Naggar on May 11, 2018. The artists and visitors were welcomed by Mr. Ramesh Chander, Indian Curator, IRMT, and, from the Russian side, by Dr. Alexander Pereverzev, Asstt. Russian Curator, IRMT.

In general, Mr. Gurpreet Singh does portraits, sculpture and wall paintings in a wide range of media but nevertheless prefers watercolour landscapes, which was what he mostly brought for the present exhibition. They included a lovely series of what he calls “street scenes” done on handmade paper with rough texture: small-size works depicting streets of European cities with their small cafes, shuttered windows, narrow passages and antique streetlights. The series aptly demonstrates the artist’s good sense of composition and balance of colour.

He also displayed a significant number of views of his native Punjab countryside with its ubiquitous greenery and huts scattered across the endless fields. Of considerable interest was his recently completed series of the round watercolour miniature paintings executed with minute strokes of extra fine brush. It mainly includes Punjab and Himachal landscapes and shows the artist’s mastery over perspective and the world of minor details.

In his newly created colour series based on the region of Spiti with its stark and astounding high altitude desert landscape, Mr. Panwar explored the effect of sunlight on snowcapped mountain peaks. It also included the instantly recognizable Pangong Lake in Ladakh with its stunningly pellucid water. Other examples of his colour works is a series of square decorative pictures depicting the same almond tree in bloom in different colours (bearing an unmistakable stamp of Van Gogh) and a view of the exotic Malana village with its inhabitants lounging around on the main square. The exhibition also included Mr. Panwar’s still lives of fruits and berries tempting with their juicy freshness, several seascapes and small-size monochromatic works depicting Indian temples. 

Mr. Baldev Panwar exhibited a great variety of works. His forte are undoubtedly the black-and-white charcoal works which this time included the portraits of the Indian saint Sai Baba Shirdi, realistic pictures of pet and domestic animals, still lives (inspired by the 17th century Dutch masters), and the view of Hadimba temple in Manali.  He also displayed his philosophical reflections on man’s spiritual journey replete with a number of symbols like temple bells, sound waves depicted as concentric circles, and Buddha heads influenced by Gandhara style.