Through the eyes of renowned modernist Indian artist, FN Souza

From earth-toned landscapes to nudes to formlessness, several artists from the older and younger genre pay an artistic tribute to Indian artist, FN Souza, in an art show, titled ‘Posthumous Dialogues With Artist FN Souza’ at Museum of Goa, Pilerne
Some of the works on show at ‘Posthumous Dialogues With Artist FN Souza’ at Museum of Goa, Pilerne
Some of the works on show at ‘Posthumous Dialogues With Artist FN Souza’ at Museum of Goa, PilerneGomantak Times

Celebrating the centenary of the renowned artist SH Raza, in 2019-2020, the Raza Foundation previewed an art show, titled Posthumous Dialogues With Artist FN Souza, a contemporary of Raza, at the Museum of Goa, Pilerne, on April 23, 2022.

Souza, termed as femme fatal in the art world, was thrown out of school for his lucid drawings on the lavatory walls, and later from JJ School of Arts in Bombay (now Mumbai) for being part of the revolutionary Progressive artists group. Souza was ostracized from the Christian society in Goa for painting nudes and Christian deities, and, “The reason to choose Souza was to bring back Souza to Saligao,” says the curator, Sabitha Satchi, an art historian, living in Delhi.


Twenty five artists from the older and younger genre, spanning different backgrounds and cultures were chosen and given a wide range of topics to choose from viz disease, war, death, and nature, that would relate to Souza’s oeuvre.

Artists who are participating are Charudutta Pande, Harshada Kerkar, Julio D’Souza, Kalidas Mhamal, Kedar Dhondu, Pramod Prakash, Parneet Sol, Saba Hasan, Sachin Naik, Santosh Morajkar, Sailesh Dabholkar, Shripad Gurav, Siddarth Kerkar, Sudhir Patwardhan, Sweety Joshi, Uday Shanbhag, Vivan Sunderamn.

Artists mentioned below display works in a choice of colours, formats and mediums, the focus being Souza’s physical and psychological realities and conceptual links between art forms of the artist.

Sculptures by Subodh Kerkar at the art show
Sculptures by Subodh Kerkar at the art showGomantak Times

Atul Dodiya’s three works, from the series which he was doing since the pandemic, refers to the early 20th century artist Carlo Carra, in his elongated figures, intermix of quiet movements and stillness in an earth-toned landscape and healing nature.

Viraj Naik has caricatured faces of people in political and social scenarios, which vie against each other in a state of perpetual irresolutions, connected yet separate, in different ways in reciprocal exchange of innovative imagery, juxtaposing features of man and animals, which edge closest to Souza’s figurative narratives.

Chaitali Morajkar’s collage of nudes, and PJ Krishnan’s nudes explore a conceptual sensory threshold of the thematic show.

KM Madhusudan, working with various mediums, has been engaged with classical literary text, art and cinema. The Odipus series, created during the pandemic, responds to meditation on the renderings of Souza’s Odipal fascination with childbirth, explicit nude portraiture, as the artist draws towards a film he’s working on, titled Kari (charcoal)

Pradeep Naik displays a four panel work, depicting a clear sky, ecological destruction that humans have contributed to with a caricature of Souza in a corner.

Siji Krishnan’s watercolour in earthy tones explores an impending absence, lurking behind a male figure with pink nipples, suggesting androgynous nature of a paternal figure, interrogate gender categories of people and nature, dwelling into the depths of personalities, using restrained detailing. She realizes that its essential to move beyond physical boundaries, to enable her to understand the process of her mind.

Sculptures by Subodh Kerkar, activate memories and association with Souza. Defining every piece in its each unique form, capturing detailing, intensity of Souza’s strokes, and demonstrate the power of imagination and expressions over reality.

The show was aimed at influencing and interacting character and feelings, which reflected statement and rare visual logic, exploring the realms of the lexicon of timeless, formlessness, and emblematic representations of the psychological effects of colour and space of Souza’s narratives, which altered from one painting to another. And, a few artists convincingly unveiled emblematic representations related to Souza’s mutilated figurative narrations.

The exhibition will be on view at Museum of Goa, Pilerne, till May 30, 2022

Some of the works on show at ‘Posthumous Dialogues With Artist FN Souza’ at Museum of Goa, Pilerne
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