The world is changing and there is a growing consensus that urgent and drastic measures must be taken if we want to safeguard Nature and its beautiful diversity for posterity. While collective actions are being taken by states, groups and individuals, artists play a unique and often vocal role in drawing our attention to these issues in ways that are unique and nuanced. The artistic voice of Arpita Kar stands out in this respect, as she addresses issues of climate-change and deforestation in her artworks.
Residing in Kolkata where she studied at Kala Bhavan Shantiniketan, the artist is originally from Agartala, Tripura. The artist approaches her themes through a worldview where she recognises that as societies change, urban sprawls are expanding at the cost of natural environs. The resulting deforestation and pollution has led to many balanced ecosystems being disrupted, causing a growing number of species to go extinct every day, at a rate not seen in millions of years.
The artworks convey her reflections that even though we are becoming more and more technologically advanced, we are increasingly helpless in the face of natural disasters where many of the calamities are man-made. Although taking stock of dark themes, her works have a positive intent. She wants to draw attention to us cultivating a deeper understanding and respect of Nature’s awesome power, calling us to strive towards maintaining its harmony and preserving its treasures.
Kar’s usage of bright colours in her works is subtly purposeful. She uses them to create vivid imageries that strikingly portray her narratives; drawing people in through the colours’ visual appeal and then transferring their attention to the artworks intent. Amidst the din of the scenery, we can find animals that continue with the course of their lives; sometimes a distant or hidden Buddha can be seen as a sign of peace, urging us to look for the positive in life.