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Thursday, December 12, 2013

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart

By Jigna Padhiar
Photography: Courtesy Sakshi Gallery


Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
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Revisiting histories, Indian artist Rekha Rodwittiya’s latest exhibition makes for apt social commentary in current times...

“Feminine space of survival” is an area that many an enquiring artist has engaged with. Layered with critical narratives involving self in relation to the larger world, renowned Indian artist Rekha Rodwittiya’s latest exhibition at the Sakshi Gallery in Mumbai, aptly reflects her long-time muse – feminist articulation – in a compendium titled ‘Matters of the Heart’.

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
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Using a monumental female figure as the central focus of her canvases, the artist dots her protagonist with a full-bodied frontal view, distinguished and arresting in demeanour, often lone, unrelentingly gazing at the viewer. And she continues to stand tall – irrespective of the many representations – torture, betrayal, and celebration... from indignance to softer emotional hues... her colour palette veering from one end of the spectrum to the other to convey the ethos.

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
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Synonymous with the title, the paintings in this exhibition have the protagonist’s bodies detailed with personal histories in the form of autobiographical photo images, which have been superimposed by watercolours.  This set of paintings marks the comeback of photographic images, as the artist picks up the camera after almost three decades. 

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
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Metaphorical objects from the everyday, held in the hands of the protagonists, take the viewers attention to the actions, meanings and associations that these objects might carry in the life of the artist and are open to interpretation to the viewers. The viewer becomes witness to many a histories, desires and memories, at the same time confronting his/her own.

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
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The works of art powerfully define Rekha’s feminist political engagement yet again. One can get distracted... are the photographic images creating the female form or is the body holding these images together? While deep within, a small voice questions much beyond this scenario – the current status of women in the Indian society.

Rekha Rodwittiya’s Matters of the Heart
Rekha Rodwittiya

Medium: Digital Inkjet print with autobiograhic photo images and hand-painted watercolour on Paper
Dates: Dec.5-31, 2013
Venue: Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai


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