The Evolution of Pseudo-Realism: Devajyoti Ray’s Unique Artistic Journey

Art is a journey—an evolution of ideas, influences, and experiences that shape an artist’s unique narrative. In the evolution of Devajyoti Ray’s art one can see the influence of his humble beginnings, to his slow growth and maturity which culminated in his oeuvre of Pseudorealism, a term that has become quite synonymous with his style of art these days.

Embracing Artistry: The Genesis of Devajyoti Ray’s Journey

Begining as a self- taught artist, Ray picked up threads of various practices from academic to traditional craftsmanship, which all helped in creating an unique style quite outside the daily academic genres. From local exhibitions in Kolkata, his journey to international venues have also changed his subjects with time. What remained constant though, is the use of his vibrant colours which made many compare him with the fauvists. But that comparison would be erroneous as his use of colours has a scientific rigour which flows more from the colour chemistry- first espoused by Briget Riley.

Influence and Inspiration: Forging a Distinctive Style

A pivotal encounter with Balraj Panesar, a collage artist, marked a transformative phase in Ray’s artistic odyssey. Panesar’s collage artworks, which look messy from close distance but acquire enigmatic look when seen from a distance, captivated young Ray in the 1990s. Following the master, Ray too started making collages almost in similar fashion. However, the influence was short lived and today there exists only a handful of such collages. In his later years, he shifted first to surrealist works, similar to Hemen Majumdar and later Bikash Bhattacharya. This too was a short-lived phase, giving way to more political artworks and finally settling for Pseudorealism.

Balancing Passions: Academia, Art, and Service

In his younger days, Ray was not quite sure of taking up art as his raison-d’etre. Instead he had taken up Economics at Presidency college, to prepare for a well paying government job.

But growing up in Kolkata, at a time when the state government had newly started spaces like Nandan, where one could see international films, not exhibited elsewhere, Ray got hooked to this creative minded crowd that frequented these places. Next to nandan, was the Academy of Fine Arts, where one could also see regular art exhibitions.

These influences slowly pushed him towards writing and painting.

Pseudo-Realism Unveiled: Ray’s Artistic Philosophy

Devajyoti Ray’s art is an amalgamation of influences, introspection, and contemplation. Pseudorealism as a style, captures the essence of reality while infusing it with a surreal touch, challenging conventional perceptions and inviting viewers into an enigmatic world of interpretation.

Endless Horizons: Future Perspectives

Training in Economics, his government position, his more than twenty year long work experience in India’s hinterlands, as also his deep interest in the socio-economic histories of people have placed Ray in an unique position, rarely seen among other artists. His works often speak of human realities in a different manner. One work that stands out is titled ‘Transmigration of Soul’.

It is a work that shows the transformation of Cuban revolutionary Che Guevara from a rundown communist once to a fashion icon now after death.

Like this, Ray now plans to create an entire series on yesterday’s people and their present status in public memory.

error: Content is protected !!