"In this contemporary political scenario, Chaos is my best man. He strikes us with wonder and deception; he is an avenger as well as a magician. Chaos has no definite face, body or structure. It is ambivalent and elusive to the senses. His subjects are perversely grotesque and unpredictably mild.
This series of paintings portray the many dimensions of chaos, its subliminal, historic and metaphoric influences in our lives. Hope you all enjoy these paintings as much as I did while working on them over a significant phase of my life."
- Albert Ashok
Chaos in Wonderland
"You will not see the sweet blue sky always. How we see different kinds of clouds in the sky; black and white, heavy and light, opaque and luminous, some are murderous and assaulting as well. This thought moved me to paint a woman lost in appreciating the uncertainty."
The Terrible and the lyrical
The Paintings of Albert Ashok and Samarendra Kumar Datta
Diversity of form in contemporary painting is extensive, as it contains all the legacies of the past not only of our country but also of the various trends through out the world. An artist builds up his own form through selection and synthesis of various inheritances according to his/her own motivation and world out look. Our modernity started with assimilation of western naturalism during the middle of nineteenth century. The second trend of the modernity grew out of the rebellion against such foreign invasion that prompted the artists towards the search for an indigenous identity out of a nationalist ideology delving deeper into the legacy of our classical and popular past. The forms of neo-Indian school thus generated. All the subsequent developments till modernist and Post- modern have grown out of these two basic structures.
The present duet show of the two artists Albert Ashok and Samarendra Kumar Datta is based on two basic trends of the initial phase of our modernity, that is western naturalism and indigenous heritage. The trends are naturally diverse. But the variation endows the show with a different charm revealing how the contemporary life contains the stresses growing out of its complexities and at the same time sublimates the same towards an enchantment and divine beauty.
Albert Ashok is a self made man whose artistic faculty has developed out of his struggling interaction with the life. Born in Agartala of Tripura in 1961 has lost his mother at the age of one and half. The struggle started there. When he was eight or nine, he felt he had an indomitable urge for artistic creativity. But finding no way out he fled from his home at the age of seventeen in search of art. He learnt painting through strife with this life.The life was very much real to him. He might have felt that he could express this dissension through realism, and the reality could best be captured through naturalist form. After conquering a good grasp on naturalism, he deviated. Naturalism has its own limitation. But if it can be energized with subsequent trends of distortions and geometrical innovations, It can delve deeper into reality and also super-reality. At a certain stage Albert converted his realism into fantasy to reveal the deeper mystery of life, of love and sexuality. Out of this fantasy and a mystery a different kind of beauty was revealed to him. He could extract beauty out of struggle of life. He endowed his naturalism with cubist geometrical structure. The synthesis revealed the contradiction between the beauty and the horrid and also how the terrible can be resurrcted towards the pleasant. The present series of paintings shown in this exhibition is built out of this philosophy. Where pastoral cows contain the metropolitan violence and complexities, and the ‘bathing woman’ reveal within her lyrical and bucolic charm an intricate strife with this life. He has made a successful admixture of urban and rural ethos.