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Artists reach creative heights on Tagore Hill

Ranchi, March 4: One of the capital’s most scenic picnic spots is now a muse for artists.

And not just one or two, but 60 of them, as Tagore Hill hosts a three-day Spring 2011, a visual artists’ summit.

Organised by NGO Society for Preservation of Tribal Culture and Natural Environment, the workshop offers artists a scenic retreat to ideate, paint and interface with fellow artists from all over India — Delhi, Gwalior, Lucknow, Calcutta, Jharkhand and neighbouring Orissa.

While 30 are visiting students from Sanjay Khare College of Modern Art, 22 are established artists from all over India and eight are from Jharkhand, including names such as Tarak Shankar, Dinesh Singh and Ramanuj Shekhar, among others.

Paints, charcoal pencils, brushes and canvases in hand, those assembled were charmed by the serene ambience of the spot. Shankar, in fact, asked artists to be inspired by Tagore’s life, given the venue. “The charms of the natural surrounding will unleash creativity of artists,” he said, adding he would depict his paintings related to nature.

Maharashtra-based Sanjay Kurha, a gold medallist from JJ School of Art, seemed to agree with Shankar. “This lush green spot seems to trigger my creativity,” he said.

Senior artist Vasanti Joshi from Gwalior said she was “bewitched by Tagore Hill’s beauty”.

“I’ll probably draw landscapes of this spot and its surroundings,” said the veteran artist.

Some of the other better-known names are S. Alam from Delhi, and Uttam Mallick, Rupam Vishwakarman and Kaushlesh Kumar from Lucknow. “Childhood acts as a major source of inspiration. I use pastel colours, acrylic and charcoal,” said Kumar.

For visiting students, the workshop will be an exploration of their artistic relationship with existing socio-cultural tropes. “I am looking at a fresh depiction of the Radha-Krishna dance using acrylic paint,” said emerging artist Monica Thackrey.

Jharkhand’s artists, mingling with the others, were heard discussing what they would paint in the next three days. While Keka Bose said she would paint shepherds, Ghazala Yasmin, who specialises in abstracts, said she would show “loneliness”. For Rina Singh, poetess Mahadevi Verma’s oeuvre worked as a muse.

Ajay Jain, a representative of the host NGO, said the idea behind the endeavour was to promote local artists and make visitors aware of the legacy of Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore here. “We’ll promote Tagore Hill as a tourist spot by organising cultural activities,” Jain said, adding once the workshop was over, they would organise an art exhibition in the capital.

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