Monday, March 7, 2011

Feminine Syntax : Personal Biographies - Karishma D'souza

Balancing Act

‘Sometimes when one is moving silently through such an utterly desolate landscape, an overwhelming hallucination can cause one to feel that oneself, as an individual human being, is slowly unravelling. The surrounding space is so vast that it becomes more and more difficult to keep a balanced grip on one’s own being.’

Haruki Murakami ‘The Wind-up bird Chronicle’

In certain circumstances or situations, one can travel beyond oneself to look at the familiar clinically, which finally allows one to be closer to the self. My art practice is often such a space for me, allowing me to revisit feelings that linger from a memory, while grappling with the elements that make up a painting- and how one creates a visual; being a space where I can pay homage to something; communicate with someone who has repeatedly given unconditionally; hold the dialogue.

The most precious thing in life is the sharing of the spirit, and that no one lives in isolation.

In my work I try to reach out with a tweezer and pick out these wispy, seemingly ephemeral and easily dissolvable, points of connection, sentences of conversation, that hover and float, morph and regroup to their original shape continuously in the stratosphere of memories of my lived experiences; and the experiences of others that leave imprints on one through a retelling; experiences that are relived as often as they are retold. I would see these paintings as a response for me being reached out to, for the light that is often shone for one while groping in the dark.

The quote regarding the possibility that through forgetting one is doomed to repeat the same mistakes, rings often for me. The imagery in these paintings are also reminders for myself – warnings of the follies of life, carried in Sufi poetry, in biblical quotes, in the poems of Robert Frost, Emily Dickinson, Yehuda Amichai, Edgar Allen Poe and T.S.Eliot, in the writings of Ben Okri and Haruki Murakami.

In some of these paintings the landscape or the ‘setting’ is the primary subject or focus, where the figure or details, assist the exact atmosphere one wants to communicate. In others the painting is built up to act as a ‘setting’ for the intention, which lies in the details. The paintings are pictorial diaristic notes, or documents, which speak about what I have been most impacted by in life’s encounters.

Karishma D’souza


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