Vandana Kalra | Indian Express
The question to ask is where does a work of art come from? It comes from lived life, from what impacts you. It takes from art history, cinema, literature, poetry, theatre or even stories told by people. I donʼt think there ever really were good old times. Thatʼs why in some great literature and works of art, darkness has been a crucial source. It also comes from the possibility of redemption, because one canʼt live entirely with darkness, and, if one could, one wouldnʼt be selfreflective when making art.
SOLO SHOW : A SUMMER NIGHTʼS DREAM, MADE IN COLLABORATION WITH THE NGO-KHUSHII.
“I take any object, shape, tree, animal, human or bird, and work on them the way I would work with an actual brush and paint. For instance, shaping the beak or tail of a bird, giving it multiple colours and highlighting the tip of its beak, shaping the wings etc. In short, whatever the artwork demands or whatever my imagination tells me, I can achieve. This fluidity has been made possible after years of experience.”
FIGMENTS OF REALITY
Zahra Amiruddin | The Hindu
Known for his multimedia works that often surround the s.t. themes of animals, sexuality, space, and tactility, Kalekaʼs most recent show combines both, fantastical and realistic elements. For example, in a painting titled ‘My Sacred Space,ʼ Kaleka draws his studio scattered with flamingos, a monkey riding on a camelʼs back, the Roman Colosseum, and a green Vespa. While the scene looks surrealistic, the artist is in disagreement. Heʼd rather term it as magical realism. “What I create is in the realm of possibility, unlike say, depicting an elephant with wings!” Kaleka exclaims.
तह-सतह : A VERY DEEP SURFACE
Inaugural exhibition 20/01/2017 at JKK , (Jawahar Kala Kendra), Jaipur, Rajasthan, India
Entitled ‘तह-सतह: ‘A Very Deep Surface, Mani Kaul and Ranbir Singh Kaleka: Between Film and Videoʼ Curated by eminent film historian and scholar Ashish Rajadhyaksha, this exhibition is a conversation between Indiaʼs leading avant-garde filmmaker Mani Kaulʼs classic celluloid films from the 1970s and 80s and his digital experiments in the 2000s, reworked here in multichannel formats, alongside several video-oncanvas works by internationally renowned artist Ranbir Singh Kaleka. Consisting of over 10 single and multichannel video installations, a sound installation which includes poetry and music alongside video projections on canvas, this exhibition is an attempt to ask new questions about the moving image in 21st Century India.
THE TAH-SATAH EXHIBITION, JAIPUR
“…trained in direction at the Film and Television Institute of India (FTII) Pune, under the tutelage of the maverick Bengali film-maker, Ritwik Ghatak. In a career spanning four decades, Kaul made some of the most aesthetically challenging and critically acclaimed films in Indian film history. Kaleka (1953-) is a leading Indian contemporary artist trained as a painter at the College of Art, Punjab University, Chandigarh. Kaleka became known for his oil paintings of mythic scenes in the unconscious of the Indic everyday. From around the turn of the millennium, he started to produce multimedia artworks, projecting digital moving images onto surfaces containing monochrome painted figures in oil. The show in Jaipur presented video installations of Kaulʼs cinema and Kalekaʼs mixed media work consisting of moving images projected onto paintings,”
VISIONMIX SHORT CUTS.
Directed and edited by Lucia King
An anthology of 12 artists and filmmakers from the VisionMix network in Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai interviewed about their projects. Includes excerpts from their films and artworks.
Featuring: Atul Bhalla, Sameera Jain, Paramita Das, Moutushi, Asim Waqif, Kavita Joshi, Ranbir Kaleka, Priyanka Chhabra, Sheba Chhachhi, Gigi Scaria, Avijit Mukul Kishore, Anupama Srinivasan.
I DO LOVE DONKEYS VERY MUCH
Kishore Singh | New Delhi
To know what a maverick artist looks like, look no further than Ranbir Kaleka. He wears a hat even when indoors, from which on occasion I have seen fish hooks dangling — or perhaps they were earrings. Unlike the networking artist, his eyes donʼt dart impatiently across the room, scanning to see whether there are buyers interested in seeking him out. You have all his attention when he speaks to you, and his speech is deliberate, slow and accented.
40-YEAR-OLD RARE PAINTINGS AT THIS ART DO
Ipshita Mitra | Times of India
Around four decade old paintings, drawings and other artworks were showcased in the exhibition titled ‘Crossings’ that defined the paradox of permanence and transience with the passage of time. A connoisseur and an art collector, Kiran Nadar’s motive behind sourcing the age-old and unseen artifacts was to make people aware and appreciate art in all its splendour. Says Kiran Nadar, “India is still far from achieving the status of an ‘art hub’ and this is an initiative to achieve the same. There is definitely an interest that seems to be growing but somewhere the sensibilities have not matured and there is less of an involvement with art.”
DAY 4 OF INDIA ART FAIR: HIGHLIGHTS
Olina Banerji | India Today
Delhi’s crash course in high culture and art appreciation continued well into the fourth day of the India Art Fair. If things may have been a bit dull post lunch on Friday, the fair made up in numbers on Saturday as phone camera wielding students and enthusiasts crowded the more popular stalls, posing with paintings and installations that caught their fancy, or were just plain bizzare.
ARTWORKS SNAPPED UP BEFORE PUBLIC VIEWING IN SINGAPORE
Deepika Shetty | The Straits Times
Even before it opened its doors to the public, Singapore’s most high-profile art fair, Art Stage Singapore, had sold several expensive works after a by-invitation-only evening last night.These included one of controversial British artist Tracey Emin’s neon works brought in by New York gallery Lehmann Maupin and priced at more than £55,000 (US$84,000). Indian new media artist Ranbir Kaleka’s four-channel video projections on paintings were acquired by the private Kiran Nadar Museum of Art in New Delhi for an undisclosed sum, while Singapore gallery Gajah sold two paintings including one by leading Indonesian artist I Nyoman Masriadi for US$350,000.
Zeenat Nagree | TimeOut Mumbai
In the late 1990s, when contemporary Indian art was being redefined through experiments with video and new media, Ranbir Kaleka’s first video-painting made its debut in Delhi. Since then, the 57-year-old Delhi artist has shown his distinct artworks in museums and art galleries across the world including New York, Venice, Berlin, Lisbon and Sydney but rarely in his home country.
Gitanjali Dang | Frieze
Morphing and reproducing exponentially, the image, as we now know it, is perennially beleaguered. To outwit this condition is a challenge, but Ranbir Kaleka is happy to pick up the gauntlet. Having studied art at the Punjab University in Chandigarh, Kaleka moved to London in 1985, where he completed his MFA in painting at the Royal College of Art and remained in England until finally returning to Delhi in 1998. ‘Sweet Unease’ was the 57-year-old artist’s first solo show in India since his return. The exhibition encompassed Kaleka’s decade-long multidisciplinary practice; barring the video Man with Cockerel II (2004) – the earliest work in the show – all other works were video projections on painted images.
Zehra Jumabhoy | Artforum
Delhi-based Ranbir Kaleka’s first solo show in Mumbai includes a number of bewitching installations, from older video pieces, like the grainily poetic Man with Cockerel, 2001–2002, to newer ones, such as Cul-De-Sac in Taxila, 2010, in which a white horse magically appears when a man waves a hammer. The whimsicality of the exhibition, “Sweet Unease,” draws upon Kaleka’s childhood in a village in Patiala, Punjab. The recalcitrant rooster seen in Man with Cockerel was inspired by the macho beasts Kaleka witnessed in rural cockfights. In the video, a man holds a struggling cockerel in his arms while standing in a silvery pool of water. Finally, the cock (pun intended) dashes away, while the man and his reflection dissolve in swathes of gray mist. A similar mind-body struggle is represented in Wrestlers, 2010, a video that alludes to rustic wrestling troops, in which two identical men indulge in a sweaty brawl that could be mistaken for violent lovemaking.
Ranjit Hoskote | Volte Gallery
Ranbir Kaleka’s works have achieved significant international saliency during the last decade: they have been exhibited in museum, biennial, foundation and gallery contexts in Venice, Berlin, Lisbon, Vienna, New York, Mexico City and Sydney, among other centres. Born in 1953, in Patiala, Kaleka was educated at the Punjab University, Chandigarh, and the Royal College of Art, London; he has lived and worked both in Britain and India. Across the three decades of his artistic activity, he has produced both a remarkable body of paintings, vibrant with phantasmagoria and epic disquiet, as well as a body of trans-media works that combine conceptualist sophistication with a calibrated opulence of image.
RANBIR KALEKA COBBLER
Uma Nair | Art HK 10
https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/blogs/plumage/art-hk-10/ Hong Kong will be the hub of an art paradise this week. ART HK 10 will reﬂect Hong Kong’s ‘Gateway’ status in presenting a unique opportunity for collectors to see and buy work of a quality and geographical diversity not available anywhere else in the world. ART HK will be the showcase for international Modern & Contemporary Art in Asia with over 150 galleries participating from 29 different countries. Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai: Viewing Ranbir Kaleka’s work is like a manipulation of time in which one may both experience the moment of action as well as view it from above. The works bring back nostalgia steeped in surrealism.
VIEWING KALEKA IN TAIPEI
Jordan Magnuson | On-line Review
I was reminded of the importance of balancing context with immediacy today, as I observed a child observing Ranbir Kaleka’s multimedia installation, “He Was a Good Man.” The piece itself is a fascinating one, if a bit slow‐paced: we see an oil painting of a man in the foreground, intently focused on threading a needle… gradually, the painting comes to life: the man’s image takes on warm tones, and we see that he is breathing; likewise, the background starts to shift, and change, revealing images from the man’s youth; wait long enough, and you see the scene become a painting once again… curtains are drawn back, and shadows of observers come and go; from the background, a voice: “he was a good man.” It is a subtle piece, interesting precisely for its slow pace and quiet rhythm; for its self‐awareness, and its multidimensional treatment of life and art and observation.