Krishna's Cosmos - Ratnottama Sengupta

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A young student at Shantiniketan was studying a tree, to unravel how the petals part. Walking past him, Nandalal Bose said: "If you persist, the tree will accept you in its shade and even let you walk in..." That had set off Krishna Reddy on his artistic quest. Later, the exploration of nature beyond the limitations of the visible world developed into a spiritual curiosity about the cosmos that in turn led to devising ways to overcome technical difficulties in creating icons of distilled beauty which reduced the appearances of objects to their pure and essential forms. This creativity is in itself a process of learning for the artist and his students alike. it enables an observer to peer into the innermost essence of things and ponder on the universe in constant upheaval. The inward life of the cosmos itself is brought before us all through his viscosity prints. Krishna Reddy worked a revolution in printmaking by discovering this method of printing numerous colours from a single metal plate. Experiments in the possibilities of simultaneous colour printing remained unpredictable until Krishna analysed the oil contents of inks and effected ways of controlling that. The impact was a reliable viscosity print: graphic artists could now work with the intensity of tones and range of colours in a single print. That, along with the spirituality of his art, makes Krishna Reddy a legend in his lifetime. Shantiniketan is only one of 250 universities to have him as an artist in residence. A museum in Bangalore devotes a wing to his prints. Paris and London, Ljubljana and Venice, Australia and Argentina, Morocco and China, biennales and triennales boast his retrospectives. Solo shows, multiple workshops, lectures, publications, portfolios-Krishna Reddy's life is buzzing with activity. For Krishna, it is not enough to produce his art; one is responsible for sharing one's knowledge, too. This book is an attempt to portray this artist with a message. It is, as we said, a study in the creativity of a master.