Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'

Director Anu Bajaj of Gallery Art Positive celebrates its 15 years in contemporary art practices with a solo show of award-winning origami artist Ankon Mitra at Bikaner House, 'The Pilgrim’s Progress'

Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'
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Director Anu Bajaj of Gallery Art Positive celebrates its 15 years in contemporary art practices with a solo show of award-winning origami artist/ sculptor /designer Ankon Mitra at the Bikaner House entitled The Pilgrim’s Progress. In an uncanny coincidence, Ankon is also reflecting on the completion of 15 years of his art practice and has pivoted this show on the unveiling of 15 diverse materials to accompany this celebration for Art Positive. The show is curated by art critic Uma Nair. The exhibition will open on April 26 and will run till May 5.

A suite of 22 new works has been created exclusively for this occasion, underlining an eclectic synthesis of elements from several art historical movements associated with origami, reflecting intense conversations between folds and materials in a rare resonance of gravitas and sensorial beauty.

Designed specifically to fit into the Bikaner House Main Art Gallery floor plan, curator Uma Nair says: “It’s an unravelling of high-intensity spatial formulations that will invite a confluence of illusions as well as alluring responses from viewers. The Pilgrim's Progress is an allegory brought forward in the language of design in the unending quest of weaving together form, space and order, time and all energies. ”

Bridging Spirituality and Materiality

Ankon’s installations create a melange of materials bridging spirituality and materiality. The layers and gathers of the materials create variegated inner light qualities. Buddhist tenets and Indian philosophies swing through the finesse of facets created from multiple folds.

In the thicket of narrow verticals and zigzagging diagonals, laid over a matrix of thatched momentousness, the dappled surfaces quiver with fertile energy from the tension between the overlaid geometries.

In this body of work, Ankon’s dispositions develop an existential character as he deconstructs the aesthetic logic of his previous constructions into a deeper search. In embracing what we call the elegance of materiality, he challenges the ideas of order with a dynamic duality while considering the states and spaces of daily routines.

At Bikaner House, the Main Gallery will be punctuated with a series of folded creations that will celebrate the tenets of time, space and light. Amongst the most intriguing and arresting will be An Audacious Dream of Utopia, Memories of a Warm Embrace, Golden Fruit, The Forest Peacock, The Fountain of Folds, Radha-Krishna Raas Leela, The Garden of the Mind, and many more.

Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'
Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'
Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'
Gallery Art Positive presents Origami artist Ankon Mitra’s solo show titled 'A Pilgrim’s Progress'

Ankon has spent the past fourteen months getting ready for this seminal show. He says, “I love the Latin maxim - ‘Vivendo Discimus’. It translates to ‘By Living, We Learn’. The artist learns about his technique and his material by working with it and meditating on it. This show is going to be an important milestone in that ongoing journey, but I am only scraping the tip of the proverbial iceberg at the moment. As the poet John Dryden says - “Errors like straws upon the surface flow, he who would search for pearls must dive below”. The joy is in the pilgrimage itself, the conclusion is actually a sombre affair.”

Anu Bajaj, Director Art Positive, says: “It feels extremely exciting and also satisfying to show Ankon Mitra at Bikaner House during a time when Art Positive is celebrating 15 years of its presence in the service of contemporary Indian art. For us, this show is integral to forging new directions and continuing on the journey of serving Indian art in unique and novel ways by bringing Ankon’s highly work to an Indian audience.”

Mitra’s work lighting installation - ‘Komorebi’ was the cynosure of all art aficionados in Venice at the Arte Laguna Prize, Arsenale du Nord, Venice, Italy (2021). At Bikaner House his works will merge the organic with geometric precision, making Origami a tool of verve and vivacity.

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