Rasana Bhardwaj

Rasana Bhardwaj is an award-winning, multi-faceted Indian artist who is a graduate of the Abhinav Kalamahavidyalaya fine arts institute (Pune) and she also holds a degree in Visual Arts from SNDT Women’s University (Mumbai). She is currently pursuing her MFA in Painting from the Sir J.J. School of Art in Mumbai, the oldest art institution in India. Rasana’s work—which explores the innermost human desires, fears and conflicts—has been exhibited as a part of numerous solo and group exhibitions throughout respected galleries and art fairs in India. 

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I perceived that, as an art practitioner I could express my concerns through certain body postures that show gesticulation. This visual language represents the unexpressed emotions, unspoken words. Displaying controlled chaos within.The presence of colossal bodies in my works has a repository essence. In the process of drawing I tend to discover one’s inner self. It manifests as a response to interactions with my deepest conscience, places within the unlighted space of my mind, an extension of certain memories, belonging to emotional statues. My works are a medium through which a dialogue starts as an alternative way for interacting with the self, to introspect. To relate the tangible quality of a colossal body and its language; the folds, curves, touch and feel with that of the human mind is what I try to achieve through my practice. This reciprocation results in an awareness about the self, highlighting the significance and connectivity with every deep or shallow emotion. The inclination towards the physical colossal bodies can be traced back to my preferences for mid-aged feminine nudes, the forms which have been an integral part of my practice. The method therefore has metaphoric meaning for my obsession with bodily parts which gets romantically translated through objects. I am also drawn towards the basic and the organic because of its ability to germinate, reproduce, foster, enlarge and continue the cycle of existence.

My childhood has been about growing up in a house which inhabited restrictions and sometimes violence. Curling up in a cocoon knowing no ways to express led to until the teenage years.This gave me a chance to be in close proximity with drawing and coloring in leisure time. A sound of breaking objects, screaming noises from the closed doors or just heavy pillows pushing into the ear drums were not just moments, but were characters who narrated stories of unaddressed fear, anger and chaos within. Now when I look at these objectively, they become precious for me, therefore I engage myself in understanding them. It gives me immense wisdom to find solutions in any present life, collecting the relics of the past. I relate this act of balance with that of presenting the body languages within, the body which has been a battlefield throughout human existence. The body gets transformed throughout one’s life; several times the mind is inflicted with ferocity, disrupting its original peace and existence. The works are a metaphor to the Psychological journey of body and mind, also suggesting the importance of preserving and caring for it. 

Nudes have been a recurrent theme in my practice —painted images of perishable, natural emotions. I tend to suggest their mental states, their sensitivity, and the fragility of their existence. The subdued and subtle colors of my work draw references from the silent, unexpressed feelings. The lines and the form however, are screaming to explode, derived from the understanding, ‘Life is chaos, and balancing the chaos is Life’. The morbid tone of the monochromatic palette speaks of grief, loss, and pain but a punch of brightness suggests the joy, happiness, balance and love. Unravelling the hidden instincts of the soul which further relates metaphorically with my existence is what I set to achieve through my works.

-Rasana Bhardwaj