During the early part of the lockdown, Falguni Manish Mehta, an experienced artist depicted life as she lived it in a set of paintings ‘Blissful Indoors’. But, as the restrictions on movement due to the coronavirus pandemic got extended, she turned her focus to the poignant story of lakhs of migrant workers in the big cities and their struggle to live through the tough times.
The 12 paintings in this collection, ‘Migrants’, each accompanied by a touching narrative, were displayed on social media and were also recently featured in the pages of Mumbai’s Free Press Journal.
Falguni Mehta is an independent artist based in Mumbai, with over 25 years of experience in the field. A top ranker in Applied Art from Sophia B. K. Somani Polytechnic, and ranked third in Maharashtra, she has done a number of individual exhibitions and also participated in group shows at some of the most well known art galleries in the city, working in mediums such as acrylics, watercolours, pen and ink, oils and mixed media textures. She also taught Art and Design at different international schools in Mumbai.
Narrating the background to her latest collection, Falguni said a lot of her work revolved around the concept of home. "My root connects to culture and home, sometimes the modern home, sometimes my dream home!"
So it was only natural that this featured in the paintings she did in the early days of the lockdown. “The Covid-19 issue came up, giving me more time in my home and lost within the concept of home that I painted about. It is a blissful feeling for an artist, to be with her canvas and not many other callings." Thus was born a set of paintings that she has entitled ‘Blissful Indoors’.
However, things changed soon. "But soon I realized my new privilege. While the Covid-19 issue is faced by the entire world, it’s not the same for each. The News channels flashed the migrants issue, and looking at the images made my heart ache," Falguni said.
Elaborating on her feelings, she said, "While I had been making paintings of homes and luxury, there were people who did not have luxurious homes, and yet are desperate enough to lose their lives to return to their homes. Their helplessness was heart-wrenching, all they could do is take what they have and move towards their home irrespective of the distance or the means, only relying on their feet and strength."
What motivated her? "This inspired me to paint them, or at least my reflection of the scenes I saw on the news, while I was still in the comfort of my home. The more I painted them, the more I felt compelled to represent their struggles through my art."
But, Falguni emphasises, "My paintings may be a means to tell their stories but I believe that they don’t need our pity, they need our help!
Falguni’s paintings are available for sale.
For more details:
Click here to view Falguni’s latest collection of MIGRANTS
Click here to her collection INDOORS
Click here to read Free Press article:
To view her other works: https://falgunimehtaart.wixsite.com/works
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