Puri was the destination for 26 well known artists for all over the country assembled there for a different kind of pilgrimage to celebrate and share their creativity. The four-day artist camp from 1st Dec. 2010 to 4th Dec. 2010 hosted by Bhubaneswar-based Suvadra Art Gallery showcased paintings, graphics and experimental works of art. The well-organized event featured both veterans and the promising artists from across the country-from the holy city of Benaras to Tagore’s Santiniketan and from Baroda to Tripura. At the Youth Hostel in Puri, the artists not only painted but also spent considerable hours interaction with each other on the current trends in India art scenario where commerce rules over the creativity of the wide range of works of art that the camp could create, one that arrested every visitor’s attention was the painting of Lord Jagannath by Priya Ravish Mehrafrom Delhi who painted the ‘Black God’ in blue.’ I could imagine Jagannath as an incarnation of Krishna,the blue sea here captured my imagination and dominated my canvas,’ explained the artist.
In a different context, Anita Bhattacharya from Kolkata compared women with Goddess Kali and her canvas celebrated women power. Being at the land of poet Jatadev , senior artist Fakir Mallick was inspired to paint an episode from Jayadev’s famous GeetaGovinda while BiswajitDasgupta painted Indian saints who used to come on regular pilgrimage to places like Puri. And he decided to have a series on the theme.
But mythology and spiritualism did not dominate the canvas of all the artists. Durga Das,former Principal of the famed Khalikote Art College of Odisha,painted the concept of ‘Freedom’ and PravatRoutray on aspiration;AshisPanday’sbold brush strokes depicted his interaction with
nature. RinkuDev from Tripura preferred to paint an abstract art work. Odisha’s well-Known painters SibaPanigrahi and Kashinath Jena were also crowd pullers, especially with the aspiring artists.
The production of the camp became a part of a national art exhibition in Bhubaneswar,announced gallery director Rabi Rath. The camp was collectively inaugurated by Pinaki Mishra ,Member of parliament,Puri and an art lover,MaheswarMohanty former speaker of Odisha Legislative Assembly, Dr.Ganeswar Mishra,Former President of Odisha Sahitya Academy and S.K.B Narayan,Chairman of INTACH- Odisha chapter: Kumar Haldar, Managing Director, Puri Hotel; Raj Kishore Patra, Managing Director, Hotel Holiday Resort.They highly appreciated the noble effort of Suvadra Art Gallery and suggested to make this a unique event.