By Hand From The Heart is a Makers Market event in South India. Upcoming Events: 22nd Edition: 2nd – 3rd February '18 , Jenney Residency, Coimbatore. 23rd Edition: February '18 in Chennai.
Chennai based artist Kumaravelu talks about his journey into the world of art; his inspirations, dreams, mistakes, and life changing milestones. From spray painting jobs to gallery art shows; Kumaravelu has seen it all. Meet the artist at the art group show at By Hand From The Heart, Lalit Kala Akademi, Chennai, this February 2016.
Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name is Kumaravelu; I am an artist. After completing my Matric Board, I wanted to pursue my interest outside academics. My parents completely understood my sentiments and gave me the full freedom to pursue and develop my interests. I began to learn the nuances of drawings and paintings and many learnings came my way – not just about the art but about life itself.
I started my career as a spray painter; but life had better plans for me.
There was an art studio near my workplace; it was a studio that created art works for cinema hoardings. I used to observe the artists at work; and the cinema banners always attracted me. Everyday on my way to work; I would stop by this art s
tudio and observe the works and only then head to my work place. I remember having sleepless nights, because of these art works. I just couldn’t get my mind off the hoardings. I decided that this is what I wanted to do; I went to the art studio and asked for a job; I began to work at the studio and there on I started my career as a commercial hoarding artist.
My work place.
I quit the art studio after five years and I started my own studio at Kilpauk. I continued to work on cinema hoardings, advertisement banners and sign boards.
During this phase, a friend of mine visited my studio and observed my works and suggested I explore other different mediums and subjects.
I was open to the idea and I began to study the works of different artists and began to create replicas of the great artists like Rembrant, Raja Ravi Varma and likes.
Discover the real artist in me.
One day my wife visited my studio and I showed her around. Staring at one of my Ravi Varma’s replicas she said; “don’t mistake me, if you have copied Ravi Varma’s painting the credit will always go to Ravi Varma and not you, you are only a technician not a creator.” This got me to think, and I wanted to discover the real me. First, I stopped working on replicas and I began to read the autobiographies of all the great artist.
I gradually began to work on my own style; but somewhere deep inside I knew their was a void & a certain lacking. Around this time I stumbled upon a book “WHAT IS CREATIVITY? Discourse by OSHO”. I visited the OSHO COMMUNE INTERNATIONAL, Pune and enrolled in their creativity course for six months. I began to learn & understand that creativity never came from the mind, it is something that is beyond the mind.
I found my signature. In the last 20 years I have showcased my works in both solo and group shows in various art galleries and art events all over India.