Jana Bednarova is a Slovak artist and curator who has extensively painted the Meghalaya landscape; monoliths are a recurring theme in her works. She explains her fascination with the monoliths “The Meghalaya monoliths are monumental and very impressive, the original Khasi religion worshipped monoliths, these stones serve as memorials, milestones, these are used for worship of deities and form part of their rituals. There is also a belief that the stones actually grow by the volume.”
Bednarova says that these monoliths possess energy and give a feel that they are alive , besides having moss and even tree growth over them. Bednarova was recently in New Delhi where she curated a group exhibition ‘Abode of Clouds’ held at India International Center where paintings on the Meghalaya landscape were on display.
The exhibition was jointly organized by Resident Commissioner of Meghalaya House in Delhi, and The Embassy of Slovak Republic.
The famed root bridges of Meghalaya also figure prominently in her works she says that these bridges convey a very important meaning “When I see these bridges I see how nature can be the solution to the problems that we face, in those inaccessible places where there are no roads these bridges connect places and make transportation possible. This is sustainable solution; the morale of the story is that we should look to nature for solving our problems.”
Jana who received art training in Slovakia, Czech Republic, Spain and MS University Baroda gets inspiration by tribal culture, traditional art forms and exotic places such as India.
She believes that artists would always come back to their roots for inspiration “I think Indian artists are doing a good job fusing traditional and modern, and I believe artists would come back to their roots to get inspiration.”