I am Sudha Achar
I was born in the East and live in the West. I travel extensively to explore the arts of different cultures as well as contemporary arts; all enrich my life and offer me a very expansive outlook to discover and create many of my own approaches in my art-making journey.
I straddle the worlds of arts and science. My art reflects who I am as an amalgamation of multiple cultures, a product of my close personal relationships. It also reflects a life humbled and enriched by the trust of my patients, their life stories, and the joy of treating them to health as their physician.
Whether it is installation, construction, sculpture, painting, ceramics, metalwork or jewelry, I generally prefer to begin with no preconceived idea of my finished work. As I explore the materials and the technical process, I begin to envision a concept. I work until I feel I have expressed what I wish to convey.
I enjoy the challenge and the process which will inevitably express who I am.
I find making art is a dynamic process: from one moment to the next, one context to the next, one milieu to another, one medium to another. Shifting, changing, making the new, and developing a personal language with a sense of grace. I like the end result to be multifaceted and encompass more than one way to reason.
My works are not generally very available for compartmentalization. Some of them are abstract depictions. Some originate in fragments of my memory. Many or most originate in the unconscious. Some of them represent only their own form, emerging as ‘poetics’ of art-making. In musical metaphor: geometry is a gesture, movement is rhythm, harmony is the resolution of dissonance and color is voice or instrument. Mood and emotions generated are joy, tension, ebullience, anger, rage, sadness, bliss and more.
Some of my works can be explored from normal viewing distance as well as from an intimate proximity to be engaged in what they have to reveal. What is anticipated may be different than what will be discovered. As the distance shifts and details are revealed or muffled, then images, color fields, forms, textures, and rhythms separate or coalesce in fields of vision. Feelings generated continue to evolve.
I like to create work where illusions are unstable and invite repeated explorations by the viewer. Initially, the works provoke emotion, rhythms, color harmonies and a belief in a discovered image. Look away and look again; there will be entirely new and just as ambiguous structures and feelings. Additionally, the viewer will recreate my work by adapting it to personal frames of reference. The capacity of the work to co-opt existing expectations and be co-opted in return is also the success of the work.
A good painting is a conversation where emotions, time, space, process, and the raw materials collide with the medium’s illusionist possibilities; it has less to do with managing the dialogue between materials, and images. A blank canvas and tub of paint or a block of stone and chisels are nothing but materials, devoid of meaning. When I intervene and put them together, they emerge as a ‘painting’, ‘sculpture’ or a 'jewel'. While they do exist on their own, they also become a point of departure for the viewer.
Painting, like drawing, is a primary activity. It is a very efficacious and enduring way to communicate. Infants draw and paint before acquiring language. 32,000 years ago the ancient inhabitants of the cave of Chauvet-Pont-d’Arc in France demonstrated extraordinary communication capacity, leaving a legacy of fantastic artwork on the interior surfaces of the cave that still evokes intense emotional responses. We as humans will continue to inhabit interiors and paintings will continue to grace our walls as extraordinarily efficient communication modalities. At present, we are much divided, limited in our ability to influence events and their effect on our expanded, globalized world. All this is occurring while we are seemingly at the height of connectedness through digitization, the internet and social media.
My art-making offers me a physical record of my psychic impulses, binding them intimately and enduringly. It offers me a sense of integrity and completion in this complex and fragmented post-modern society.
Sudha Achar All rights reserved.