Over 20 line drawings by modernist painter Maqbool Fida Husain, believed to be created around the time he left India for England, are on display as part of a recently opened exhibition by Vadehra Art Gallery here. “Lines of Thought: Drawings by M F Husain” has on display 22 drawings created in charcoal and graphite that showcase the effortless, uninterrupted strokes in which the artist captured a flow of thought, much like a writer might do through his or her handwriting.

Husain’s relationship with the line remains professional and personal, embodying the steady hand of skill and confidence as well as a spontaneity of spirit germane to the seeker,” the gallery said in a statement. The show highlights the integrity of the medium through the over-simplification and abstraction of the subject matter. The drawings, in a sense, offer a skeletal picture of Husain’s career over the years. “Husain used line as a language, revealing the line as the most basic property of his more complex works,” the gallery noted.

The artist’s world-renowned symbols and references also find expression in these drawings – from mythological and religious depictions of Durga, the Buddha, Ganesha and Hanuman, his trademark horses and Gaja Gamini elephants, to his consistent dabbling in calligraphy and the European influences of geometric abstractions.

“Husain’s philosophy was that all work is completed at all stages, and yet no work is ever finished. “These gesture drawings capture the presence of the artist, both in time and timelessness, maintaining an integrity of touch that stays true to the felicity of movement he describes in his art philosophy,” the statement read. The show is will continue till October 5.

(This story has been published from a wire agency feed without modifications to the text.)

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First Published: Sep 09, 2019 17:37 IST


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