artist creates paintings for western literature
Myshkin’ by C K Purandare
, 17th [ correspondent] : ‘Cherish
the kernel of meaning of words’ said
Dnyaneshwar. To capture the soul of world-class
literature and transfer it to the medium of
painting is no mean feat. This has been achieved
by Chandrashekhar Purandare – originally
from Pune but now settled in Scotland.
book on Fyodor Dostoyevsky’s world famous ‘The
Idiot’ will shortly have the cover-page
based on his painting. Anthem Press, London are
to publish this book.
Anthem Press specialises in publication of social
research and literature from Russia and South-East
Asia. They have selected Purandare’s Prince
Myshkin [above] for the forthcoming book. Prince
Myshkin is the central character in ‘The Idiot’.
Purandare has also done portraits of other characters
from the same novel as per his interpretation – Nastasya
Filippovna, Rogozhin and proposes to paint Aglaya
He has also done paintings based on ‘Transparent
Things’ – a novel and ‘Speak, Memory’ -
a semi-autobiographical work, both by Vladimir Nabokov,
the author of the controversial ‘Lolita’.
John Keats’ celebrated poem - ‘La Belle
dame sans Merci’ is also depicted in a painting.
He has done an imaginary portrait of Prof Peter Kien,
the main character in ‘Auto da Fe’ [
Article of Faith].
Elizabeth Shue is the main actress in the film ‘Leaving
Las Vegas’. Nicholas Cage got an Oscar for
his role in that film. Purandare has portrayed Elizabeth
Shue in that film as well. He has tried to represent
the existential philosophy of Jean Paul Sartre as
elucidated in ‘Being and Nothingness’ too
in yet another painting.
has cultivated this unusual hobby of re-interpreting
the meaning of thoughts expressed in verbal language.
He is basically an engineer settled in Scotland
for the last ten years. He holds a masters degree
in Sociology as well.
told ‘Lokmat’ – ‘Documentation
of social misery is the main theme of my paintings.
Thousands die in the world due to man-made disasters
of poverty, inequality, violence. State, market
and media are the power-centres in society, hardly
bothered about such ills. My paintings are a
commentary on this situation. They do not express
beauty in the given sense. Delicacy and subtlety
in conventional frame of beauty have no place
in my work. According to me, verbal language
is an inadequate medium to express something
that goes to your heart, that makes you have
a re-look at the reality. That is why I have
switched over to painting. Conventional art celebrates
individual agonies not the social misery. This
collective indifference all over the world irks
me. It is one of the motivating factors for me
leaves an imprint on the social conscious and
, in turn, social conscious is reflected in literature. ‘‘I
am interested in sociology, world-class literature,
arts, music, politics and various schools of
philosophy. My training as an engineer may have
helped me in comparative studies. My work based
on literature has probably come out of this attitude.
Kalidasa’s Meghdoota, Rabindranath Tagore
said – ‘we are all yaksha on this
earth’. Such profound utterances inspire
me. So does the message from BhagavadGita – sukhdukkhe
same krtva labhalabhau jayajayau. I try to do
painting based on such thoughts. Not only the
western literature but marathi literature inspires
me as well. I have tried to do paintings on Laxmibai
Tilak’s smrtichitre, G A Kulkarni’s
NilaSawala and Hirawe rave,Arvind Gokhale’s
Kokru, Makarand Sathe’s Operation yamu.’’
work can be seen at Su-Darshan from 19th Dec
to 2nd January.
news-item appeared in Lokmat,
the biggest selling marathi daily in Maharshtra,
western India, on Dec 18, 2004]