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How artist Bharati Sagar attempts to preserve magnificence through her art

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Bengaluru-based artist Bharati Sagar shares why her current series is such a marked departure from her usual work

Bengaluru-based artist Bharati Sagar shares why her current series is such a marked departure from her usual work

‘Try everything once’ seems to be artist Bharati Sagar’s motto when it comes to creating art. In a career spanning four decades, she has dabbled in various media ranging from oils and watercolours, to pottery and mixed media. Her current series, Preserving Magnificence, is also a deviation from the abstracts and human figures she is known to depict, showcasing instead the wonders of wildlife.

“Every few years or so, I try my hand at something new be it themes, styles or media. I experimented with metal dust and citric acid and found the results on paper to be quite exciting,” says Bengaluru-based Bharati Sagar, adding that she designed an entire show of abstracts using this medium in 2017.

Artist Bharati Sagar
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

She has replicated her use of metal dust and citric acid, this time on canvas, for her current series Preserving Magnificence. “During the lockdown, we would hear reports of how animals were coming out of their enforced habitats and were roaming the streets. I remember thinking how they were reclaiming their own space.”

Her interest piqued, Bharati began reading up on wildlife and was surprised to find out how many species were endangered. “I began working on this subject to bring about more awareness on how important each animal is to our ecology,” she says, adding that she looked up nature magazines and sites as a frame of reference for various fauna.

A work from artist Bharati Sagar’s series Preserving Magnificence

A work from artist Bharati Sagar’s series Preserving Magnificence
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

“I’ve always done human figures and abstracts, so I needed visual information to recreate wildlife,” she says, talking about the series where she has captured a diverse spectrum of the animal kingdom. “Koalas and pandas are my favourites! Not only do they look adorable, but they also exhibit human characteristics,” she says, recalling how as an Army child, when her family were stationed in Jabalpur, their home overlooked a valley and they could see deer, rabbits, snakes and birds all the time. “All those memories came back to me when I was working on this series.”

Her friend, poetess Rukmini Prabhakar, has penned haikus for images from the Preserving Magnificence series. “It began when she saw some of my work on social media and was inspired to write a few lines. She has now crafted verses for almost every work in the series — it is interesting how she has brought out the feeling behind each work with her words.”

A sketch by artist Bharati Sagar

A sketch by artist Bharati Sagar
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement

Bharati forayed into art quite early, studying Commercial Art from B.I.E.T in Mumbai via correspondence at 13, and then continuing her education at Jawaharlal Nehru Fine Arts and Architecture College, Hyderabad. At Preserving Magnificence can one also see images from ‘Sketches over the years by Bharati Sagar,” a book of sketches on perforated, handmade paper that can be framed individually.

Part (10%) of the proceeds will go to the Wildlife Conservation Society.

Preserving Magnificence, a solo show by Bharati Sagar, is on display at Reves – The Art Gallery till August 25.

A work from artist Bharati Sagar’s series Preserving Magnificence

A work from artist Bharati Sagar’s series Preserving Magnificence
| Photo Credit: Special Arrangement



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