Follow Us:
Thursday, May 19, 2022

Wall to Wall

Artists Meenakshi J and Jey Sushil on leaving their imprints on the country’s walls and involving people with art

Written by Vandana Kalra |
October 31, 2015 4:51:41 am
art, art exhibition, Artists Meenakshi J, Artist Jey Sushil, dasna jail, delhi exhibition, talk, indian express Meenakshi J displays the works at an exhibition (Ravi Kanojia)

In Ghaziabad’s Dasna jail, they have left behind figures of dancing men and women. A huge ship is sailing against rough waters on a 30×15 ft wall in Khetri in Rajasthan. Colourful masks adorn walls of a school in Uttarakhand. In the last two years, Meenakshi J and Jey Sushil have travelled across India, from Ranchi to Goa and Kashmir to Chennai. Completing the trip is a 350 CC green bullet named Hari Bhari. The purpose of the unending journey is to splash colours on walls, with the involvement of the local communities. Now, an open exhibition at the India Habitat Center in Delhi chronicles their adventures with photographs that document their artwork. “We want to break the notion that artists work in a confined space. By involving the people, we are giving them a first-hand experience of the process,” says 28-year-old Meenakshi. The visual artist is a pillion rider to her husband, a BBC journalist. They have a 8×25 ft canvas on which over 200 people have painted in the last three weeks.The outcome is a riot of colours, from hand prints to floral patterns, butterflies and lighted diyas. Visitors are encouraged to dip their hands in paint and get creative.

Even as Meenakshi engages with a group of children, she recalls the couple’s first trip in 2013 — from Delhi to Mumbai, where they painted in the balcony of a friend. The response encouraged them to plan a road trip from Mumbai to Chennai, with stops in Pune, Mangalore and Bangalore, among others. Their luggage included clothes, camera and acrylic paints, and accommodation was provided by the host for whom they painted in return.

While the two usually receive a warm welcome, there have been roadblocks, too. In a school in Muzaffarpur’s red-light area, Chaturbhuj Sthan, for instance, they left the work unfinished after the staff objected.

In Udhampur, the school master only allowed them to paint after classes were over for the day.

Best of Express Premium

What makes KuCoin P2P Trading Platform a Good Choice To Buy Crypto?Premium
Airtel Demonstrates Immersive Video Entertainment On 5G; Recreates Kapi...Premium
Is It A Good Idea To Keep One Account For All Your Financial Transactions?Premium
Touching The Sky : SIMS, Pune Alumni On A Path To Make A DifferencePremium

Prepared for challenges and well-stocked with basic utilities, they also have to deal with surprises on the road. One afternoon, in the humid heat of Goa, they faced a bike breakdown and, in Bangalore, they ran out of petrol on the road. “Several people came forward to help us since I was a female pillion rider,” says Meenakshi, adding there are years to go before their road trip ends — there are innumerable walls still to be painted.

Latest Comment
View All Comments
Post Comment
Read Comments

For all the latest Lifestyle News, download Indian Express App.

  • Newsguard
  • The Indian Express website has been rated GREEN for its credibility and trustworthiness by Newsguard, a global service that rates news sources for their journalistic standards.
  • Newsguard

Featured Stories

When Ajay Devgn appeared on Pakistani chat show, was asked by drag queen ...
Anup Soni says he looks up to father-in-law Raj Babbar: 'Only actor from ...
Aishwarya Rai turns heads at Top Gun Maverick premiere in Cannes, see pho...
Shilpa Shetty remembers what Shah Rukh Khan told her on the first day of ...
When IU 'went blank' after seeing Song Joong-ki and Song Hye-kyo at her c...
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
X