Artist of the moment…..Sohan Qadri….

In the gallery the only painting not done by Qadri is the last one which was painted by Richard Mayhew.

The artist came from India and was a great figure in the movement of contemporary art in India. He was best known for painting the metaphysical, the spiritual side of painting on canvas.

A brief clip featuring the artist’s work at a gallery in India. A collector talks about the Indian Art market.

Sohan Qadri was born in Chachoki, India in 1932. His family owned a very large farm and was quite wealthy. From some servants that lived on the farm Qadri learned of meditation and dance when he was around seven years old. Qadri liked to make scupture works out of the mud that was in his village.

As he grew older his mother wanted him to take over the duties of the family farm. Though outside he showed no emotion, inside it tore him up. He couldn’t handle the stress and ran away from home. Not like many of us who ran away for a few hours, he took off and lived in monastaries and with other people that shared his spiritual path and followings.

Eventually he returned and told him mother he would not take over the family farm and instead would start learning about art. He became an apprentice to a local photographer.

He then moved onto Bombay. The artist wanted to become an artist with a modern view, and he needed to leave smaller cities and villages behind in order accomplish his goals and dreams.

For college he attended the Simla College of Art. He received a degree, then went on to study teaching. As fate would have it, a publisher of a regional art magazine saw Qadri’s work and became his first major patron. His patron was similar to Howard Tullman, the Famed Chicago Art Collector, who really are passionate about buying works of art from up and coming artists.

A simple time line about the style of his evolution would be figure work, abstract work, landscape, meditative work…

A few notes about the artist’s process. He saw colors either dark and light, and warm or cool. Dark colors reprsented the earth and were used in the bottom works of the art. Warm or cold colors could be used to denote the energy passing through space. Light colors would be used in the upper third or upper levels of the art.

Qadri made his first break into the art world by having a wonderful sell out show in Africa.

Qadri lived abroad much of his life in places such as London, Paris, and for more than thirty years in Denmark.

The artist’s process includes getting into a meditative state, and then using colors that are familiar to his native country of India,  and letting loose. Many paintings could be reflections of a quiet coastal scene. The viewer is given the structure and framework of a realism work, but with many details left out.

Qadri was very diverse in his mediums working with ink, oils, paper, and acrylics.

Price ranges: Works done with paper, many are collages some are paintings, are available from two twenty five thousand dollars. Ink works can be found from ten thousand to forty seven thousand. Works done in oils can range from two thousand to twenty five thousand. Acrylics can be found around ten thousand dollars.

The artist had quite a few celebrity friends. One was a winner of the Nobel Prize for his writings named Heinrich Boll. Boll enjoyed the meditation that was apparent to him in the artists’ work.
I enjoy this artist for his bold use of color and for his blend of abstraction and realism in his meditation paintings. If I was to compare his work to another artist it would be Richard Mayhew. Mayhew was an African American Indian artist that is still alive today and at his peak would take a landscape or seascape and reduce to brilliant fields of color. Below is an example of a Mayhew landscape. All forms are reduced to flat shapes of color with no concentration on form or structure, all feelings are centered on emotion.

Qadri passed away in 2011.

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