G. R. Iranna





Born 1970 in Karnataka, Iranna obtained B.F.A. from the College of Visual Arts in Gulbarga and M.F.A. from Delhi College of Art. Iranna is a recipient of National Academy award in 1997 and the M.F.Hussain and Ram Kumar award. G.R Iranna has been nominated from India for the ABPF Signature Art Prize 08, Singapore. His works are philosophical reflections, revolving around the interactions and explorations of a man’s inner world with the existential issues of today. Through his present sculpture he comments on human civilizational growth and its intrinsic follies consisting of aggression and ideological indoctrinations, violently inflicted upon human beings in the name of territorial growth. Iranna’s intention is to capture the trauma of human kind.

“Iranna’s chosen vehicle of articulation is the allegorical tableau; an idiom that offers its contents to the viewer with disarming candor, even as it withholds many of the subtexts that would render them readable- so investing its protagonists and situations with the quality of enigmatic presence. Iranna takes advantage of the critical and even adversarial stance that allegory permits, while also nourishing its potential for all that cannot be decoded, cannot be named; the expressive and the sensuous. It is a tribute to his ingenuity and tireless self-questioning that he has perfected his allegorical art, for its roots lie in artistic choices that were widespread to the point of being formulaic during his student years. At that date, the styles of the Italian Trans-avant-garde had won considerable favor with the votaries of the narrative and allegorical option in Indian figuration; they had percolated to his generation through the works of their immediate predecessors, many of them associated with the influential Faculty of Fine Arts at the Maharaja Sayaji Rao University, Baroda.

Iranna’s accomplishment, in his work during the first few years of the 21st century, was to extend his investment in the figure considerably, in terms both of pictorial inventiveness and metaphorical charge. His aims were twofold; first to consolidate the archetypal figure as bearer of existential crisis and second, to restate the relationship between this figure and a versatile ground characterized by sensuous plenitude as well as menace. Iranna has also renewed his commitment to an obdurate pictoriality; we must note his insistence on making images that place stringent demand on the viewer, being resonant with a mythic significance that lies beyond the parameters of everyday experience. Previously, as we have seen, Iranna has made various approaches to the heroic male figure; the body yogic and the body electric, the sublime and the effulgent body, the body levitating in a trance. Now, the figure is more flexible, even more amenable to riddle-like paradox than before, even more resonant with the mandate of emancipation from circumstances.” – Ranjit Hoskote



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