There is an unhurried contemplativeness in Sipra's art, which surfaces
in the objectivity and precision with which she amplifies her
creative vision. Most of her work originates from her perception
of places visited during travels at home and abroad. Her serenely
evocative watercolor paintings touched with gentle nostalgia,
are however not appealing representations merely. The artist
captures – through sensitive handling of light, perspective
and color – the ‘genius' and soul of a place. This emerges
vividly in her ‘The Colors of Italy', which reflect the strong
influence of Paul Klee and the Impressionists.
In Sipra's words ‘ Italy is a mosaic
of colors – colors that cascade into form. Burnt siennas,
ochres, ‘rossos' and umbers blend with legendary ‘cittas'
full of life into angel windows, grilled or stone balconies,
arches, bridges and red tiled rooftops.' In most of
her paintings, colors flow one into another as if spontaneously
fused at their origin. Forms are outlined with strokes
of color – mostly without structured drawings under
the paint. Color blooms in broad strokes, sheer washes
and – most enticingly – in fine brushwork, to suggest
details of flower and foliage, meshed tiles, filigreed
rails, or slatted shutters; and in her portrayals of
light, blazing white, sliced into shade or transmuted
into a vivid sunset shimmer, or sparkling diamonds
Perspective is handled with equal felicity,
evoking illusions of height; or space receding into
the depths of the painting. Roads disappear into far
distances, canals narrow away under distant bridges
and paths wind up sheer slopes or skitter precipitously
down over rough cobbles to the waterside.
In the dynamic, often cerebral ferment
of the contemporary Indian art scene, Sipra's simple
art nestles in the heart.
About the Artist
Sipra Dattagupta did not train formally at any art
college. But art was her passion, and she was tutored
in the discipline by a renowned Calcutta artist – the
late Kamala Roy Chowdhury. Widely traveled, Sipra has
visited almost all the well known galleries around
the world, pursuing and practicing her passion in private.
It has been only five years since she started exhibiting
her work. In 2001, she participated in ‘Landscapes
of Britain, a series of watercolor paintings' at the
Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata. In 2006,
she held her first solo exhibition at the Academy of
Fine Arts on ‘The colors of Italy '