The purpose of any art is to express, to tell a story. Contemporary indigenous artists create works with the same basic concepts and style at the core but have adapted to the modern-day material. This has allowed for the works to move beyond the impermanence of drawn-on-the-walls to an object, a painting on paper or canvas. The younger artists have also selectively experimented with themes that are derived from urban or global trends and phenomenon.
In contrast, urban-contemporary art is always a reflection of an individualistic expression. Artists are not bound by a traditional base or a style to follow. There may be trends that are impacting the development of contemporary society that get reflected in the works, but artists tend to work with varied media and renditioning techniques.
‘Ascending Roots is an endeavour to celebrate both the art forms under one roof. Young artists have been handpicked from each of the categories of folk-contemporary and urban-contemporary. There is no common theme that binds the works. Rather, the works represent the most preferred subject by the artists themselves.
A closer look and deeper introspection may however reveal a cross pollination of thoughts and emotions, media and techniques, and style and imagery across the two categories.
Should the boundary lines separating the groups be erased, then?