Depicting the Cosmopolitan Upheaval

Anand Singh is a Delhi based painter who works mainly on watercolors, portraying poverty and the upheaval of contemporary metropolitan life is a recurring theme in his works. He states that his works use to be form based but in due course they became abstract. “I deliberately went beyond form so that more people are able to relate to my works, rather than associating my work with the form they could interpret it as per their own understanding. This is also the reason why I leave most of my works untitled.”After serving the Delhi College of Art as a faculty for five years he now has his studio at Kaladham at Greater Noida.

Singh finds inspiration from lives of subaltern communities like fishermen and factory workers. “The spaces in which these communities exist, their tools, the whole ambiance inspires me. Their challenging life conditions are extraordinary, enough to stir one’s imagination” he explains.

Another recurring theme in his works is the upheaval and destruction which characterizes contemporary metropolitan life “During my last 30 years in Delhi I have seen the city change at a very fast pace, the changes are fast and cause a lot of upheaval. Take for instance the construction of the Metro rail how much debris and displacement it causes” Singh explains.

Singh says that in recent years avenues for artists have increased and so has outlets for displaying their works “when we were students information was scarce for knowledge we had to go to libraries and get books issued, very few libraries had good books on art. Now things are different a lot of material is available on the internet. Knowledge is more accessible and avenues for displaying the works are also increasing.”

Singh who was recently awarded the State Teachers Award for the year 2018 by the Delhi government and won the ‘Hounarable Mention Award’ at the ‘Global Association of Water Colour Artists'(GAWA) advises budding artists not to depend too much on the internet for their art “I see a lot of painters are often painting by looking at downloaded scenery, this way the actual feeling that you get by observing the subject right in front of you would be missed. I believe in observing the subject myself so that the exact feeling is captured, that is the unique creation of the artist. Being a landscape painter I know very well the role light and shade can play, nature itself can inspire and teach a lot.”

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