Looking back at a year scarred by an unprecedented lockdown due to a raging pandemic, artist Aditya Shirke's vision will stop you in your tracks. Envisioned and given life through items of daily use such as brooms and mops which are often ignored because of their commonplace existence, Shirke's exhibit titled as ‘Unleashing the Dark Horse’ consists of four pieces of which he put up in collaboration with the 'Karkhana' designed and owned by Studio Mars.
The exhibition, a one of a kind by Shirke is special, different and can mean different things to people. The dark horse, a powerful strong animal, however is interpreted by the artist as both a symbol of the year gone by and the one we just welcomed. So what does Shirke's creation signify to him?
As much as the horse in its darkest form relates to the dreadfulness of the bygone year, Shirke felt the new year is somewhat similar to the proverbial dark horse as well, someone who isn't really everyone's top choice in a race but has the potential to come out a winner. 2021 might just go that way and Shrike visualized his creation like that, a Indian Express report said.
In a video by Studio Mars, the description thus reads:
"Karkhana, Pune's new address of innovation & art collaborates with renowned artist Aditya Shirke to mark the start of 2021 with an exclusive, experiential show. The artist brings us closer to a one-of-a-kind experiment using unconventional tools like houshold mops and brooms to create magestic dark horses. First of its kind, the dark horse is truly a surreal genesis of creation & innovation."
Shrike's idea behind using mops and brooms to bring out his vision of the horse was basically that these tools, not being conventional ones used frequently bring out the creation in its most raw and crude strokes and brushes.
Shrike reportedly took inspiration from New York artists and Japanese calligraphy paintings Shodu and used carefree brushstrokes but used only black acrylic paints to keep his own authenticity intact. Also, inspired by the Japanese cherry blossom brush paintings, he named one of his pieces as ‘Cherry Blossom’ and it reflects the quietude and serenity in the canvas. Another one, titled as 'Airborne’, shows a racehorse running and positioned at mid-gallop, signifying its name.
The exhibition, that was initially supposed to be for the first week in January only was so well liked that Studio Mars decided to extend it till January 16.