When I went to art school, I was just having fun. I realised that was the last chance I had, and then I would have to get a job. – John Baldessari
I don’t want to sound as bleak as Baldessari so I’m going to focus on the fun parts.
1. One of my biggest secrets to getting fresh perspectives whether it’s related to art, politics, tech or pop culture is talking to younger people, including children.
I’m all inspired and just back from Chitrakala Parishath (CKP), Bangalore, one of the oldest, most prestigious art schools of India. The school is especially close to my heart as one of its founders, the late artist SS Kukke had taught and mentored my artist mother in the late 60s and 70s.
CKP hosted a 3 day exhibition between 9 and 11 March, 2018 where graduating visual arts students were given the opportunity to showcase work that had formed the basis of their degrees.
2. Student shows are the most interesting to attend and for me, they also serve as a barometer for the future direction of contemporary art.
3. The range of media used was extensive from painting, etching, print, sculpture, video, photography, interactive art, installation to conceptual art with the styles and subject matters too varying widely. It’s a visual feast.
Here’s an exclusive first look at the innovative new work of the next generation of creative talent.
One of the graduating BFA students, Reha Mutha admitted, “It’s been a very intensive course and my life has just revolved around the other students and teachers in CKP for the entire duration of the course. We were only allowed to put up 3/4 of our works but it’s extremely satisfying to see my work up in the gallery for the public to view. I finally feel more like an artist and less like an art student.”
“I’m not sure what I want to do next, in terms of working somewhere, being on my own or studying further. What I’m sure of though is that I need a break so I’m going to do that while I continue to explore other art schools in case I decide to study further,” said Mutha.
4. In just a few minutes that I spent there, I feel like I have so much to imbibe from all this vivacious energy, positivity, freshness, articulation and open-mindedness.
My best advice to this talented lot? Whatever you do, please document yourself, because you’re going to be history; cultivate an audience, because you’re on stage; and have photographers photograph you, because you are going to have a retrospective show later when you are older.
And like art school, the art world is a very social place. So have your gang of friends from art school, and don’t hesitate to contact your favorite artists and ask to visit their studios, go to opening nights of other artists. Remember, you have what everyone wants, especially in the art world: youth.
Okay, now I’m going back to my recently acquired personalized Muji sketchbooks. Thanks for reading.