Artist Vipul Prajapati: 'Art Is A Fundamental Aspect Of My Life'

Artist Vipul Prajapati: 'Art Is A Fundamental Aspect Of My Life'

"In my work, shades of grey take precedence over stark black and white."

Swarna SrikanthUpdated: Monday, March 11, 2024, 11:44 AM IST
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Walking through art exhibitions and romancing the paintings on display is a unique experience that touches the soul. Talented artist Vipul Prajapati recently unveiled his solo art show at Ahmedabad. Swarna Srikanth spoke to him about its theme, his love and inspiration for art, and much more. Excerpts:

Can expect you and your artworks to travel to Mumbai anytime soon in 2024?

Given my work is represented by the gallery 079 Stories, I believe they are enthusiastic about potentially organizing a travel exhibition, possibly to Mumbai or other cities.

Talking of 'When the tide recedes,' what inspired you to come up with the thoughtful theme resonating with your artworks?

Well, I prefer to describe it as a series I have been dedicated to for nearly a decade. My curiosity to explore and innovate led me to focus on shipyards. Much like the rhythmic movement of the tide, my emotions drive me to express myself through my art. I communicate through my work.

As you have explored several materials, what makes you go beyond the canvas and experiment creating installations that steal one’s eye?

It’s true; I am passionate about exploring and experimenting with various materials. It often leads me to venture beyond the boundaries of traditional painting and even step out of my comfort zone. My motivation isn’t to capture attention but to fully honour my creative instincts. Remaining open-minded enables me to translate my thoughts into narrative expressions, enriching my art practice. 

While many of your artworks have an impressive Black and White touch, we wish to know whether B/W art fascinates you the most.

In my work, shades of grey take precedence over stark black and white. I strive to convey simplicity, which lends clarity and focus to my thoughts. I primarily use pencil, charcoal, and graphite dust, as these mediums possess the inherent capacity to convey the depth my subjects require.

Do you believe that one needs to ‘study’ art or take art education to be a great artist or will interest and talent be enough?

In addition to innate interest and talent, numerous other elements contribute to the growth of one’s artistic practice. Formal art education plays a crucial role in honing skills while cultivating a keen visual sense is equally important. While skill development fosters interest and talent, visual sensibility provides direction to one’s practice. Every aspect plays a pivotal role, from creating artwork to its presentation and display. It’s akin to how our eyes perceive everything – what we see and how we see it truly matters.

Considering that every artist chooses their passion with a dream, we ask you what is yours – is it on the go or already fulfilled?

Indeed, my passion is fuelled by a desire to excel in the realm of contemporary art. Today, I view my journey as an ongoing process – a constant evolution marked by growth, perseverance, and gradual progress toward realizing my dream. I resonate deeply with the quote by Keifer: “Art is a longing. You never arrive, but you keep going in the hope that you will."

Who is your all-time inspiration?

Anslem Keifer, a renowned German painter and sculptor, is my constant source of inspiration. I deeply admire his artistic creations and the monumental scale of his work. I wholeheartedly resonate with his statement, “Not content, but the road the artist takes, is the interesting part.” 

You say “My life is like a coal mine.” Interesting! How do you describe that?

I have used this analogy to emphasize the idea that true beauty and value can emerge from the depths of adversity and struggle, just as diamonds are forged in the depths of the earth. It highlights the transformative power of hardship and the potential to grow and discover that lies within challenging experiences. In the context of my artistic journey, I firmly believe that the most potent and meaningful artwork emerges from introspection, adversity, and a deep exploration of the complexities of human experience.  

When not holding a paintbrush, where do we see you – capturing nature with a camera?

Yes, I enjoy capturing and exploring different places, encountering intriguing individuals, and listening to their narratives. These experiences inspire and fuel my creative process when I begin my work. 

If not an artist, where would have the world seen Vipul Prajapati?

If I weren’t pursuing art, the world might perceive me as a dedicated armed forces member or an inventive farmer with a passion for integrating technology into agriculture.

Now comes one basic question, which may make you think a lot: What is art for you? How do you see art?

Art is a fundamental aspect of my life. It is not just a passion but an integral part of my existence that I cannot imagine living without. As I have mentioned, the significance lies not in what is seen but in how it is perceived. This ability to perceive deeply is cultivated through developing a vision encompassing various elements. What I observe and contemplate transforms into a narrative, a metaphorical expression through which I convey my life experiences and perspectives as a whole. 

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