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  Gieve Patel
   
 

Eklavya

Daphne

   
  5th - 11th March, 2007
   
 

at 

The Museum Gallery, Kalaghoda, Mumbai 400 023

. WORKS . PRESS RELEASE    
   
 

Gieve Patel depicts the epic tragedy of Eklavya by representing a thumbless hand. The sculpture gives us a visual shock because this hand is defenseless, and mutely uncomplaining. But its very quietness gives it eloquence. "Look", it seems to say, "at what has been done to me!" This ever fascinating story from the Mahabharata is too complex for us to interpret it only as an example of caste oppression, though that aspect of it surely is important. It is also, among other things, a story about the treacherous pitfalls that exist in a profound teacher-disciple relationship.  

With Daphne, Gieve Patel turns to classical Greek mythology, giving us the beautiful wood-nymph who is saved from Apollo's rape by being transformed into a tree. This ambiguous "gift" from the gods to whom she prays for help, allows the sculptor to explore the physical and emotional trauma of metamorphosis. What is the price to be paid for changing bodily form? When flesh-and-blood become vegetation is it a moment of liberation, or is it just another trap of existence?  

In twenty-five sculptures on these two eternal themes, Gieve Patel expresses amazing plastic dexterity. The works look as though they are being moulded right before our eyes, with disarming simplicity and directness.  

As a painter, Gieve Patel needs no introduction to art audiences in this country. Now, with his first venture into sculpture, he surprises and delights us with these brave creations.  

   
 

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