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Play with texture

Sheela Maradi's paintings have an aesthetic appeal

PHOTO: N. SRIDHARAN

ALLURING ABSTRACTS Actor Revathy at the inauguration

Seven years ago, Sheela Maradi began to take painting classes as a hobby. She never expected to become so passionate about it. She certainly didn't expect it to become her career.

Yet, today the Chennai-based artist works full-time on her paintings. And till February 28, you'll get to see a sample of her work, `Cosmic Landscapes', on exhibit at Vinnyasa Art Gallery in Alwarpet.

What comes across immediately on seeing this collection is the use of vibrant colours and varied textures. There is an extensive use of warm colours such as yellow, orange, bright and deep reds against neutral white and off-white that is eye-catching. But what makes you want to reach out and touch the canvas is the wide range of textures she uses in the acrylic paintings.

"I use anything and everything to create those textures," explains Sheela. "Tissues, sponges, gunny bags, nails, shoes and socks, even my dog's paw impressions!"

The simplicity of the abstract landscapes is alluring, using a lot of basic shapes such as squares and especially circles. That's because Sheela believes that the circle is representative of spiritual auras and cosmic energy, the exploration of which is the inspiration for her art.

However, experimenting with colour and texture remains her focus. "Sometimes, a layman can't relate to abstract art," she says. "But anyone, even a child, appreciates and is drawn spontaneously to colour and texture."

Certainly with this collection, Sheela succeeds in creating art that is both accessible and aesthetically appealing.

DIVYA KUMAR

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