RAMESHWAR BROOTA

B. 1941

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Rameshwar Broota is an artist of the contemporary times with a difference in his art and commentary about the existing times. His paintings with a sting of humor and satire brought in a new dimension into the aesthetics of contemporary Indian art. His interest in painting emerged at a very early age. He completed his graduation from Delhi College of Art in 1964. His paintings in their formative stage depicted the anguish of a young painter at the inequality and imbalances that led to all kind of sufferings in the society around him. Like youths of the 60s decade, his protest at the greed and corruption in society was forcefully expressed through his satirical imagery .By 1967 at the age of 26, Broota was leading the Triveni art department. In his early works which are satirical and with sharp ironical comments on the social environment of his times are explicit in their language. The under nourished fragile figures of his preceding paintings gradually morphed into voluptuous, almost grotesque and hybrid, Gorilla like figures.   In his Gorilla Series that lasted for 10 years from 1970 to 1979, Broota's deep sensitivity and concern towards the stark materialism that was encompassing the society was reflected. His ‘Gorilla Man’ represented the artist watching the world go by changes with revulsion. In the early 70's, the fundamentals Broota’s expressions were based on his anti establishment views. His ideological attack, on the political establishment had enhanced its powers through abolition of bank nationalization and the successful liberation of Bangladesh.

 In the 80’s decade his techniques in the paintings and the visual language underwent a significant change. He simultaneously invented his new technique of carving images by scraping out the layers of flat monochromatic paints with the sharp edge of a broken blade. The discovery was important because he carves out his images, going from one stage to the other without depending on any kind of preparatory sketches on paper. On close examination, his large canvases are infact immensely intricate monumental drawings. His highly personalized technique less painterly in application of paint has the quality of graphic print.
A unique technique of the artist, while cartooning his paintings is that he turns to the human body itself for reference, while a majority of artist refers to their visual memory. It thus becomes inevitable to comment that Broota has a simple ideology guiding him through his career, which is based on humanism. Broota speaks of his painting with undiluted simplicity even as he locates himself firmly within the ordinariness of the vast Indian middle class.

The artist lives and works in New Delhi.