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8th All-India Women [UTF-8?]Artists’ Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2019  

By SK.Vyas  :

Chandigarh, April 19, 2019:  8th All-India Women [UTF-8?]Artists’ Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2019 was
inaugurated by Shri Dinkar Gupta, IPS. Director General of Police at
the Galleries of Fine Arts Museum, Punjab University, Chandigarh, here
today.

8th All-India Women [UTF-8?]Artists’ Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2019  
He gave away the following awards:
4 Professional Category:
Rs 50,000/- Kavita Mehrotra (from Lukhnow Uttar Pradesh)  for [UTF-8?]‘Exist of
[UTF-8?]Life’
Rs 45,000/- Neha Jaiswal (from Allahabad, UP ) for Paturkar [UTF-8?]‘Campanion’
Rs 40,000/- Preeti Dhaniya (from Panchkula, Haryana) for [UTF-8?]‘Bounded Precious
[UTF-8?]Time’
Rs 35,000/- Varsha Mithun Niranjan (from Solapur, Maharashtra ) for
[UTF-8?]‘Good [UTF-8?]Morning’
4 Student Category :
Rs. 25,000/- Arati Maurya (from Khairaghar, Chattisgarh ) for [UTF-8?]‘Qurisity-3′
Rs. 25,000/- Reetu (from Khairaghar, Chattisgarh )for [UTF-8?]‘Emergence’
Rs 20,000/-  Agomoni Sen (from Ranchi, Jharkhand ) for [UTF-8?]‘Inward [UTF-
8?]Lookingl’

8th All-India Women [UTF-8?]Artists’ Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2019  
Rs 20,000/-  Priya Sisodiya  (from Hyderabad, Telangana ) for [UTF-8?]‘3 [UTF-
8?]Generations’
Kavita Mehrotra lives in lukhnow Uttar pradesh
Armed with a master’s degree in fine arts, Kavita is a talented young
artist from Lucknow. She has participated in many National and
International shows, exhibitions and has received admiration for her
solo [UTF-8?]show” oozy of Formative [UTF-8?]Art”. An immensely gifted artist
Kavita
is sure to leave a mark on your creative mind and heart.

8th All-India Women [UTF-8?]Artists’ Contemporary Art Exhibition, 2019  

Exist of Life
Etching with Dry paint 60 cm x 46 cm
Neha Jaiswal lives in Allahabad, UP
Hailing from Allahabad, home for many renowned artists, Neha had been
a brilliant student in both academics and arts.  Neha has
participated in many National art activities over the years. With many
awards under her belt, she wants to paint the world with her
creativity.  Neha has also hosted 2 solo exhibitions which received
great rave reviews from the world of art.
Companion
Etching 49 cm x 50 cm
Preeti Dhaniya lives in Panchkula, Haryana
The effervescent Preeti hails from Panchkula, Haryana. She has been
actively participating in various shows, exhibitions in Haryana,
Chandigarh, Shimla on a regular basis. Preeti has been awarded by All
India Fine Arts and crafts society for hew wonderful work in
sculpting. A motivated artist,she has done some astounding work and
has many achievements to her credit
Bounded Precious Time
Wood 99 cm x 49 cm x 11 cm
Varsha Mithun Niranjan lives in Solapur, Maharashtra
A talented young artist from Sholapur, has been a recipient of special
jury award at 123rd All India Annual Art Exhibition in 2015. Her
dedication and love for art reflects from all the work she firmly
believes in the language of her craft. She has won accolades for her
work at the 52nd Maharashtra State art exhibition and Camal art
Foundation Western Region Art Exhibition.
Good Morning
Oil and acrylic 36 cm x 48 cm
Arati Maurya lives in Khairaghar, Chattisgarh
Pursuing her  M.F.A. (Graphics) , talented and ambitious Arati has
many achievements under her belt.  She has been awarded at the Annual
Art Exhibition, BHU .  This young artist is determined to follow her
dreams and carve a niche for herself.
Curiosity-3
Woodcut 30″ x 48″
Reetu lives in Khairaghar, Chattisgarh
Having won the Zonal Art Award 2017-18, by State Lalit Kala Academy,
U.P Reetu has proved her mettle in the field of art. With numerous
participation, awards and a solo show; [UTF-8?]“Astitva” An Exhibition of
paintings and graphics prints under her belt, she has  been winning
high accolades. Her stupendous work which celebrates her versatility
and creativity is sure to take her places.
Emergence
Woodcut 90 cm x 120 cm
Agomoni Sen lives in Ranchi, Jharkhand
Hailing from Ranchi Agomani has done her Masters in Fine arts from
Visva Bharti, Kala Bhavana Shantiniketan. An artist who lets her work
speak for her, Agomoni is immensely talented and determined to follow
her dreams.
Inward Looking
Acrylic on Canvas 48″ x 36″
Priya Sisodiya lives in Hyderabad, Telangana
Priya Sisodiya is a fiercely motivated young artist hailing from
Hyderabad. She is doing final year of her BFA degree course from Sri
Venkateswara College of Fine Arts, Hyderabad. Her work is a reflection
of nature, tender softness and inclined love towards girl child.
Seeking inspiration from every existing thing as almighty’s expression
her work is a reflection of her soul.
3 Generations
Wood Cut On Paper 33″x24″
Art Critic
All India Women Artists Contemporary Art Exhibition 2019
Professor Seema Bawa
Art Historian, Critic and Curator
Painting a World of their Own
Ah, well, do I wish that we lived in a world where gender didn’t
figure so prominently? Of course. Do I even think about myself as a
woman when I go to make art? Of course not.’
-Judy Chicago
‘Ah, well, do I wish that we lived in a world where gender didn’t
figure so prominently? Of course. Do I even think about myself as a
woman when I go to make art? Of course not.’ Judy Chicago
Chicago’s views on her own art practice with a concomitant awareness
about gender imbalance and on the overt patriarchy that informs social
and cultural behavior is very telling; given that Chicago has brought
a critical feminist gaze to the gender construct of masculinity,
exploring how prevailing definitions of power have affected the world
in general [UTF-8?]— and men in particular, in the way artists view their own
work process.
The role of the subversive artist, particularly the woman artist,
becomes significant in the exhibitions of Artscapes; which is holding
the eighth edition of All-India Women Artists Contemporary Art
Exhibition, that encourage women artists to simultaneously engage with
creativity and contemporary concerns.
The continuous commitment to the cause of projecting and encouraging
women artists through competition, selection and subsequent display
can be seen in the larger context of feminist art movements in India
and abroad. Through such movements the artist as both an activist with
a creative soul and also as a symbol of resistance and subversion of
dominant ideology is brought center-stage. Thus, Art enters into
fields of political and social activism, becoming one of the catalysts
for struggle for visibility, validity and assertion of value. Women
artists all over have taken up the issues of oppression, race, colour,
and gender. They have succeeded in privileging a special position for
women within the larger discourse of cultural practice. Women in art
have brought to the fore an agenda that can be differentiated from the
largely androcentric art practice. They have done this not merely by
questioning and resisting patriarchy but also by endorsing an agenda
of their own.
Mainstream art criticism seeks to contain the dichotomy between the
woman artist’s richer albeit different lived-world through [UTF-8?]“placing”
or labeling it. There is an inherent inequality and bias embedded in
the very language that we use in common as well as academic discourse,
where there is a very conscious emphasis on the gender of the creator
when referring to women who write, sing, paint, or run for political
office as specifically [UTF-8?]“women [UTF-8?]writers”, [UTF-8?]“women [UTF-
8?]singers”, [UTF-8?]“women
[UTF-8?]painters”, and [UTF-8?]“women [UTF-8?]politicians”. Exhibition of
works of [UTF-8?]“male
[UTF-8?]artists” are only mentioned as [UTF-8?]“artists” without emphasizing
the
gender. Thus, on the one hand, men are seen to be the norm and women an
aberration and therefore need to be labelled and /or valorised. On the
other hand, women artists, writers, etc., become categories
a representative of all women while men are perceived to be unique
individuals.  This aspect predicates the felt need by women artists
to on the one hand recover a space of their own within the discourse
of art and on the other mainstream it from the margins as unique
painterly works. To appreciate the polyphony of inherent in these
works, we have to be aware of and be sensitive to the heterogeneity of
backgrounds, styles and genres the women artists’ represent. The
artists in the current show have a larger canvas to work with,
especially given the competition format, that allows for a wide array
of genres, styles, mediums and sensibilities at play.
This brings us to a significant question regarding as to whether women
artist have a world of their own to paint and sculpt qua women
artists’ art practice.  Perhaps the training and the technique belong
to a shared space of both men and women, where gender is insignificant
and at this level, it is a skill that takes front stage. However, the
lived experience, the fears, insecurities, dis-privileging are
definitely gendered and at some level do pervade the Weltanschauung of
women as artists. The space painted is often personal, with a deep
emotive content that seems to somehow be ‘smaller’ but more dense or
[UTF-8?]“thicker”.
The concern with women’s’ art and artist is entangled with the
the discourse of the individual artefact and its meanings that occurred
during ‘the transition from modernism to postmodernism, which was also
that from the concept of the artist as a bohemian to the artist as a
social thinker; from the microcosm of the studio to society.’
This can be seen in the works of women artists in India who despite a
lack of formal engagement with the feminist movements have been
carving out and recovering spaces as their own. The feminisation of
themes, the experimentations with style, uniqueness of sensibility,
are all hallmarks of women’s art as can be seen in the current show.
This is not to suggest that art produced and conceptualised by women
artists are homogenous and monolithic- it is in fact, just the
opposite- diverse and vibrant, mirroring the diversity of artists
themselves. From the self to the family and from there on to larger
social issues and concerns that inform women’s lives and worlds are
the tropes within which artists such as Priya Sisodiya’s and Shobha
Nagar’s work.
One way for the viewer to recover the depth of the works could be
to examine women’s engagement with art in both historical and critical
terms and to relate these with contemporary art practice. Given the
colonial discourse within which easel and academy art developed, it is
not surprising that traditional arts, which were the forte of women,
got marginalised, trivialised and pushed into the background.
Most of the traditional arts, be it painting the Alpina and the kolam on
the floor, or the elaborate paintings on the bridal chamber of
Mithila were and are still done by women, be it in the folk or the
tribal style. Neha Jaiswal’s etching Companion uses this style to
excavate the notion of nascent violence perpetrated against women by
patriarchal societies.
Contemporary art practice by women tends to locate the female and the
feminine in the self where there is an increasing concern with the
body as the site within which feminine identity is framed. The works
of Agomoni Sen and Arati Mauraya highlight this, especially the latter
where the woman is gazing at her reflection in the mirror and inviting
the viewer to become part of this self-conscious engagement with the
self.
Indeed one observes a preponderance of figurative works in the
selection. One wonders if abstraction is gender neutral or can we read
some degree of feminisation in terms of colours and compositions. We
hope that subsequent shows of women artists by Artscape shall be able
to provide some insights into the processes and practices that go into the making of women’s painted worlds.

The Event
Since its inception in 2011, Artscape has become an integral part of
creativity and cognition at the national level. We have envisioned the
main objective of working towards the development of women artists
through our various art activities. Apart from the art exhibition, other
art activities are also organized from time to time. It is very
important to understand and know the efforts of Artscapes for society.
Promotion of originality and innovation, which is the sensory nature
of the challenges of aesthetical beauty and fantasies, has always been
a part of our norms. Artscape in a way represents feminism through
almost all of its art programmes, wherein women artists get to come
together and share their expressions. This overall involvement of
women is introduced and displayed through their artworks, which
combines both uncompromising human and artistic values in it. It is a
demonstration of unique creativity, thus also including cooperation
within the competition. Artscape’s fosters and encourages both folk art and
modern contemporary art concepts. It gives away awards to the best
creative works and collects and preserves many of them too as
encouragement.
Artscapes works on the fundamental aspect of art and culture. It
provides an opportunity and support in priority to explore, research
and project various forms and mediums of artistic expressions. We
leave the interpretation of creativities on the viewers regardless of
the debate of professional or academic qualities of the artworks, in
order to make them share their own true experiences and expressions of
joy and Rasa to the society themselves. Primarily our goal is to
continue displaying artworks surrounding the centralization of women’s
existence in the context of culture, aesthetics, social, economic and
human values. Artscapes happens to be a medium through which we
represent the artistic interpretation of organisational arrangements
in between the artist and the society. We try to showcase the art
originated and inspired by the insights of [UTF-8?]women’s entity it its
purest and true sense. It indeed is a matter of sensitivity and
thoughtfulness. All the events and activities of Artscapes, majorly
this particular All India Contemporary Women Artists Art exhibition is
organised annually to support their vital contribution and
resurrection of their existence through art as a means of voicing out.
In this way, we accept and present various means of defining the
identity of Indian art such as painting art, sculpture, art and art.
Through this event, we display the art of rural and urban contemporary
women providing them with an equal and similar platform. This makes us
Indian multi-cultural unity and integrity more precious, prestigious,
developed and empowered!
Through our All India Contemporary Women Artists Art Exhibition 2019,
it is our humble effort to present the powerful and creative spirit of
women artists working in all the parts of the country to art lovers,
critics, students and viewers. About 170 artworks are included in the
exhibition through the process of juried selection. By honouring the
prize and honourable citation during the inaugural ceremony of the
the exhibition, we strive to convert the nature of women’s thinking,
power, respect and equality into the empowerment.

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