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  Category: Articles » Arts & Entertainment » Arts » Article

Jivya Soma Mashe, a legendary Warli artist

By Herve Perdriolle

Hervé Perdriolle wants to draw our attention to this artist born in the 30's in Maharashtra, India. Jivya Soma Mashe's art form unknown by the general public is considered by experts as one of the most important contemporary Indian tribal art.

full article :

/.../ Walking is an ever-present feature both in Warli landscapes, with its countless tracks and trails criss-crossing the ground like the traces of some unfinished process of sedentarization, and in the paintings of Jivya Soma Mashe. In his paintings, walking is also included in the form of tracks, usually represented by a lone line. One or more lines, running across and structuring the canvas, invite us to follow his ever-moving figures, his "walkers" whose bold, rudimentary forms conjure up the likewise rudimentary and resolute silhouettes of other famous "walkers" represented, or depicted, by Alberto Giacometti, Charlie Chaplin, and Jacques Tati. /.../
When you take a close look at Jivya Soma Mashe's paintings, what is most striking about them is the "movement", the quality of the detail, the lightness and, at the same time, the precision of line and stroke. There is no such thing as hesitancy in Jivya Soma Mashe's work. The artist goes straight for the crux in his drawing and his composition alike. Directly, without beating about the bush, and with all the simplicity of what is obvious, ingenuous and natural. This comes across in every detail of his work. Strokes, lines and dots abound, teeming on the canvas, vibrating and harmoniously interweaving in deft compositions, which themselves reinforce the vibration of the whole. The detail and the overall composition of the work both help its movement. The recurrent themes of his work--the everyday activities of his family and friends and Warli legends--are also the pretext for a constant eulogy of movement. "There are human beings, birds, animals, insects, etc. Day and night there is movement. Life is movement." Through his subjects, Jivya Soma Mashe describes the deep-seated feeling which drives the Warli soul. As Adivasi--first inhabitants--the Warli talk to us of the most ancient of times and conjure up an ancestral culture, an in-depth study of which would possibly help to reveal some of the cultural and religious foundations of modern India. (full article :
About the Author
Hervé Perdriolle is art director, curator and essayist. He organises the first show in France of, for example, Jean-Michel Basquiat and Ravinder Reddy. From September 1996 to May 1999, Hervé Perdriolle has settled in India. He writes and organises shows around the world about tribal and popular contemporary art from India.

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  Some other articles by Herve Perdriolle
Warli painting, India
Warli tribe, India Based in the Thane District, about 150 km north of Bombay, the Warli tribe numbers over 300,000 members. They have their own beliefs, life and customs which ...

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