For the Part 2 Project, I have taken a very direct approach to painting outdoors in Nature. The goal is to produce Art that is true to me, who I am and my experiences which have been well supported by traditional techniques in the first year.
After a while copying several Masters’ works, I felt that the process was no longer inspiring me and the best way for me to grow in Art would be to take full ownership of my work by painting from direct life experiences.
I have always been fascinated by Nature, predominantly the foothills of the Himalayas in India from where rich childhood memories are stored. I however am not there now and while those memories are cherished, I would prefer to be living in this moment enjoying what beauty I have in the present.
Camille Pissarro aptly echoes this sentiment; “Blessed are they that see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing!”
Looking around I do indeed feel surrounded by beautiful nature, from the parks I live near, my garden at the back, to within myself where I can turn away from all the noise happening outside to the deep silence that resides within. As Carl Jung said, “Art is an inner experience cultivated and then expressed outwardly” and it can take any shape or form as long as it honestly expresses that inner feeling/desire which in my view is the beginning of all Art.
For this project, I have decided to paint trees. Most of my works have taken place in the park, surrounded by chirping birds, fallen leaves and swaying trees. My art is a response to the trees, a communication that is always taking place. When I look at them, I see how still they stand, so steady with a single goal, to ascend higher to the light. They are part and parcel of the whole and support their living environments in countless ways, from enriching the soil to producing oxygen, the most vital element we need to survive.
Sometimes I wonder how many people have wandered past the trees in their busy lives full of thoughts about different things and yet there they stand completely indifferent to our swirling lives. If only I could be less influenced by my mind and thoughts, I’m sure I would be a happier person. So, this practice is a self-cultivation for me. It’s doing something I love while learning more about myself being immersed in Nature.
The two traditions that I reference in my work are Chinese painting from around the 13th century and English Landscape Painting of the 18th Century. In Chinese Painting, what’s not painted is just as important as what is. Lao Tzu advocated a sense of letting go, leaving society, material possessions and positions and losing oneself in the eternal void. Of course, this can be taken more metaphorically however, if I could introduce a sense of stillness, tranquillity and at the same time a sense of vigour and spontaneity into people’s homes I would work with a sense that what I am doing not only offers me solace but also solace to others.
Born 1994 in London, UK.
Prasad’s childhood at an International Boarding school in the foothills of the Himalayas has had a major influence on him and his outlook on life. This early immersion in the mountains has fostered a love for the majestic beauty nature has to offer. As a practitioner of meditation he knows the importance of his inner well-being and strives to constantly achieve a state of peace, knowing that this will permeate into his artwork.