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Eleena Banik

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About Artist

Eleena's art may generally be characterized as expressionistic. It has grown out of her existential dilemma of living in a metropolitan city like Kolkata where she was brought up since her childhood as the only child ...

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Eleena's art may generally be characterized as expressionistic. It has grown out of her existential dilemma of living in a metropolitan city like Kolkata where she was brought up since her childhood as the only child of a working parents. The chilled silence of the loneliness inside her inner self has reacted with the loud turmoil of the city around her to generate a space of personal void. Against the background of this personal void within her inner self, she has, at a later stage, confronted quintessence of various streams of beauty, beauty of nature, life, philosophy and aesthetics, during the seven years she studied art at Visva Bharati of Santiniketan. Rabindranath was gradually unfolded to her through art, literature, music and nature. At that stage she was also acquainted with the vast treasure of Far-Eastern aesthetics. Especially the Chinese Taoist philosophy made an imprint on her. The void within her gradually got transmuted. The darkness glowed with an omnipotent light flickered out of all these sources. A kind of duality evolved, duality of exuberant colours and benumbed stillness, duality of jubilant light and serene darkness, duality of the 'heart' and the 'head'. After completing her course at Visva-Bharati, she has travelled extensively through out the world, initially for further studies, then for her own shows or for visiting art museums, and felt the throbbing pulse of the outside world. A duality of the concepts of 'local' and 'global' has thus been nurtured. Above all her 'self' as a woman has played a very dominant role in building up her 'forms'. The agony and ecstasy of her 'being' as a woman has made her art what it is. In her paintings all these dualities play their roles, get synthesized and yield towards the expression of her own vision.

A dilemma erupts out of her confrontation of the two opposing poles of reality. She makes a synthesis in another kind of dream emanated from and upholding the subconscious. She paints mythical subjects where she projects her feminine self to confront a world, where all kinds of concepts of equality get trampled through the onrush of 'power', the 'Power' that erupts from economic, racial and gender based domination. Eleena is in that way a very much socially conscious artist, who has come to her own during 1990-s, when Western globalization has arrived at our country as an exploitative force. Her world out look has been developed out of her rebellion against this exploitation. Through her forms, where in some cases she reflects Egyptian silence and merges it with expressionistic and oriental folk elements, she has questioned the dilemma of the shattered existence of contemporary living and searched for an island where man/woman can live in harmony upholding his/her own freedom. She occasionally slips into dream and fantasy to find that true norm of existence. Within the diverse expressions of this series, the search for an ideal ' Rain Forest' of her dream persists.

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Testimonials

  • BIODATA

  • About Artist

    Eleena's art may generally be characterized as expressionistic. It has grown out of her existential dilemma of living in a metropolitan city like Kolkata where she was brought up since her childhood as the only child of a working parents. The chilled silence of the loneliness inside her inner self has reacted with the loud turmoil of the city around her to generate a space of personal void. Against the background of this personal void within her inner self, she has, at a later stage, confronted quintessence of various streams of beauty, beauty of nature, life, philosophy and aesthetics, during the seven years she studied art at Visva Bharati of Santiniketan. Rabindranath was gradually unfolded to her through art, literature, music and nature. At that stage she was also acquainted with the vast treasure of Far-Eastern aesthetics. Especially the Chinese Taoist philosophy made an imprint on her. The void within her gradually got transmuted. The darkness glowed with an omnipotent light flickered out of all these sources. A kind of duality evolved, duality of exuberant colours and benumbed stillness, duality of jubilant light and serene darkness, duality of the 'heart' and the 'head'. After completing her course at Visva-Bharati, she has travelled extensively through out the world, initially for further studies, then for her own shows or for visiting art museums, and felt the throbbing pulse of the outside world. A duality of the concepts of 'local' and 'global' has thus been nurtured. Above all her 'self' as a woman has played a very dominant role in building up her 'forms'. The agony and ecstasy of her 'being' as a woman has made her art what it is. In her paintings all these dualities play their roles, get synthesized and yield towards the expression of her own vision.

    A dilemma erupts out of her confrontation of the two opposing poles of reality. She makes a synthesis in another kind of dream emanated from and upholding the subconscious. She paints mythical subjects where she projects her feminine self to confront a world, where all kinds of concepts of equality get trampled through the onrush of 'power', the 'Power' that erupts from economic, racial and gender based domination. Eleena is in that way a very much socially conscious artist, who has come to her own during 1990-s, when Western globalization has arrived at our country as an exploitative force. Her world out look has been developed out of her rebellion against this exploitation. Through her forms, where in some cases she reflects Egyptian silence and merges it with expressionistic and oriental folk elements, she has questioned the dilemma of the shattered existence of contemporary living and searched for an island where man/woman can live in harmony upholding his/her own freedom. She occasionally slips into dream and fantasy to find that true norm of existence. Within the diverse expressions of this series, the search for an ideal ' Rain Forest' of her dream persists.

  • Academics

    1998-99 – Visiting M.F.A., Glasgow School of Art, U.K.

    1997 – M.F.A. (First Class), Kala Bhavan, Visva Bharati, Santiniketan.

    1995 – B.F.A. (First Class), Kala Bhavan, Visva Bharati, Santiniketan.

  • Exhibitions

    Solo Exhibitions:

    2015 – ICCR, Kolkata. Yes I am a Single Mother; Reflections on Me and My Daughter.

    2013 – Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2012 – ICCR, Kolkata

    2011 – Museum Gallery, Mumbai

    2011 – Nehru Centre, London

    2011 – The Tagore Centre, Berlin

    2009 – Museum Gallery, Mumbai

    2009 – Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

    2008 – Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2008 – Akar Prakar, Kolkata

    2007 – Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi, with The Eye Within

    2006 – Museum Gallery, Mumbai, with The Eye Within

    2005 – Nehru Centre, London

    2005 – Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta

    2004 – Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2004 – Hotel Oberoi Towers, Mumbai

    2004 – Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

    2003 – Max Muller Bhavan, Kolkata

    2002 – Nehru Centre, London

    2002 – Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata

    2001 – British Council Mumbai

    2001 – The Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2000 – Appa Rao Galleries, Chennai

    2000 – Krosna Art Gallery, Moscow, Russia

    1999 – Pentagon Centre.Glasgow, U.K.

    1999 – Indian Consulate, Glasgow, U.K.

    1999 – Sreedharani Art gallery New Delhi

    1999 – Birla Academy of Art And Culture Kolkata

    1998 – Gallerie’88, Kolkata

    1998 – Gorky Sadan, Kolkata

    1998 – Apollo Appa Rao Galleries, Mumbai

    1997-98 – Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata

    1997 – Appa Rao Galleries, Chennai



    Group Exhibitions:

    2009 – 'Perspecta' presented by Sanjay Tulsyan and Gallery 88. Indigo & Laburnum Galleries, Cholamondal Centre for Contemporary Art, Chennai

    2008 – Rhythm—A visual harmony—Esparance, Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata

    2008 – Tamarind Art Gallery, New York

    2008 – 'Shakti', Indian Art Circle, New Delhi

    2008 – Synchrome 4, Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai with Akar Prakar

    2007 – Synchrome 4, Akar Prakar, Kolkata

    2007 – Beyond the Frame—Esperance, Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata

    2007 – The Cross Section of Contemporary Indian Art – Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai with The Eye Within

    2007 – Art Addressing Violence, Samokal Art Gallery, Kolkata

    2007 – She India—The Noble Sage, London

    2007 – Saraswati, A Tribute to Women, Art Mosaic Gallery, Singapore

    2007 – Celebrating India III, curated by Sunit Chopra, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata

    2006 – Synchrome 3, Akar Prakar, Kolkata

    2006 – Group Fifty, Lokayata, Haus Khas Village, New Delhi

    2006 – Tao Art Gallery, Myanmar Camp Show, Mumbai with The Eye Within

    2006 – Art for Water, Water for Life, Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2006 – Journey 2, Gallery Art & Soul, Mumbai

    2006 – Monsoon Show by Red Earth at Gallery Art & Soul, Mumbai and at Galerie Romain Rolland by Alliance Francaise de Delhi

    2004 – SAHMAT, The Making of India

    2004 – Tale of Two Cities, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Calcutta

    2004 – Exhibition on Munshi Premchand, Sahmat, New Delhi

    2004 – The Art Connection – Birla Academy of Art & Culture and British Council, Calcutta.

    2003 – Solitude Show—India Habitat Centre with Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust, New Delhi, Appa Rao Galleries

    2003 – Roots En Route — British Council, New Delhi; Gallery Forum, Chennai; Sumukha Gallery, Bangalore; Sakshi Gallery, Mumbai.`

    2002 – Self Portrait, RPG, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata

    2002 – Young Contemporaries from Santiniketan, Lalit Kala Akademi organized by Gallery Espace, New Delhi

    2001 – Paper Show, CIMA Gallery, Calcutta

    2001 – Lalit Kala National Exhibition, State Lalit Kala Kendra, Ahmedabad

    2001 – East Show Tao Art Gallery, Mumbai

    2001 – "Art on the move" Workshop & exhibition organized by Safdar Hasmi Memorial Trust, New Delhi.

    2000 – Black & White Show, Art Today, New Delhi.

    1998, 1999 – Group show at Taj Palace Hotel organized by Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi

    1999 – Interim, Exhibition of Glasgow School of Art,Glasgow.

    1999-2000 – Biswa Banga Millennium Exhibition, Calcutta.

    1998 – New Perceptions Images and Media, at Academy of Fine Art and Literature, New Delhi, organized by CIMA Gallery and also at CIMA Gallery, Calcutta

    1997 – Metropolitan Art Festival, Calcutta.

    1997 – Directions, Emerging Trends of Contemporary Indian Art. The AIR Gallery. London.

    1997 – Gift for India, Lalit Kala Academy Galleries New Delhi, Organized by SAHMAT.

    1996 – Bharat Bhavan Biennial, Bhupal

    1994 – The Indian Context, Organised by Appa Rao Galleries and A Gallery, New York

    1992, 1996, 1997, 1998, 2000 – All India Annual Art Exhibition, AIFACS, New Delhi

    1997, 1998, 2000 – All India Annual Art Exhibition, Birla Academy of Art & Culture, Kolkata

    1992, 1999, 2000, 2001 – National Exhibition of Art, organized by Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

    1991, 1992, 1996, 1997, 2000 – All India Annual Art Exhibition, Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta

  • Award & Recognition

    2008 – 'Swamsiddha Award' Rotary Club of Calcutta

    2006 – 'Samman', banglalive.com, Kolkata

    2005 – Award, Certificate, Primis Drawing School, Batanagar

    2002 – Award & Merit Certificate, Kolkata Kala Kendra

    2001 – Faculty Fellowship, Kanoria Centre for Arts, Ahmedabad

    2001 – State level Award in Millennium Art Exhibition of AIFACS New Delhi

    1998 – Awarded Charles Wallace India Trust Scholarship to study in U.K.

    1997 – Camlin Award for scholastic excellence in Visva Bharati, Santiniketan

    1996 – AIFACS cash award, New Delhi, along with President of India’s Silver Plaque for the best exhibit of the year

    1996 – West Bengal Governor’s Award with Gold Medal from the Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta for the best exhibit of the year

    1996 – Silver Medal & Merit Certificate from West Bengal State Academy of Dance, Drama, Music & Visual Arts, Calcutta

    1992 – AIFACS Award, New Delhi

    1990 – BSYN Award, Calcutta

    1998 – Kaushik Memorial Award, Calcutta

    1994-97 – National Scholarship & 1997–99 Junior Fellowship, Ministry of HRD, Dept. of Culture, Govt. of India

    1992-94 – Visva Bharati Merit Scholarship, Santiniketan

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