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"Creativity is in every mind".
President A P J Abdul Kalam
Shri Amarnath Sehgal presenting a painting to the President of India
Hon'ble President of India Dr. A P J Abdul Kalam inaugurated an exhibition of paintings by Shri Amarnath Sehgal on Ramayana and Mahabaharata on October 6, 2004. Speaking on the occasion he said, "Creativity is in every mind but to flourish it is the main task before us." Appreciating the creative genius in Shri Sehgal, the President recalled that the world-renowned sculptor had created an image of apartheid, a body chained from all sides and the indomitable spirit of the mighty soul.
Dr. Kalam seeing the paintings
The President said, "when I saw the 30 painting of Shri Sehgal on Ramayana, I was alive with 24,000 slokas of Valmiki Ramayana.... what I found missing in the painting on Mahabharata was the portrait of Vidura." He requested Shri Sehgal to create a portrait of Vidura. "Today what we need in the country is that every individual has to be embedded in righteousness," he added. The President suggested that the visual media, like sculpture and painting, should be part of art education in schools, as they were technology tools also.
One of the paintings by Shri Sehgal
Speaking about his paintings, Shri Sehgal said, "for the last 20 years I have perceived and assimilated the character and behaviour of the gods and goddesses who portrayed nobility, spiritualism and patriotism in their lives. It was these volatile vibrations that bubble in me and were depicted in the various images that I could create. These are reflection of may own concerning the mythological events narrated in Ramayana and Mahabaharata. The episodes generated vital emotions that I could not refrain from expressing."
In her introduction to the exhibition Dr. Kapila Vatsyayan said "the meaning and message of the two Epics have left no creative artist untouched... The secret of Ramayana to be perennial lies in its potential to be interpreted at manifold levels, through plural voices of meaning, form and technique and above all message. These pictorial expressions are his personal perceptions as the artist perceives and assimilates the characters of the heroes and heroines which fill the vast and varied canvas of the Ramayana as also the Mahabharata."
The 82-year-old artist termed these paintings as his tribute to Rishi Valmiki and Rishi Vyasa.
Copyright IGNCAŠ 2004