Sudarshan Shetty: Larger than Life

Sudarshan Shetty at his studio
Sudarshan Shetty at his studio

MUMBAI, January 19 2013 - As the third instalment for the Rendezvous with the Artist series, Asia Society India Centre took a fascinated audience behind the scenes to the studio of artist Sudarshan Shetty. Shetty, a prolific artist known for his politically driven installations, introduced his diverse range of work starting with his earlier paintings to his most recent large scale public art commissions. By touching upon his inspiration sourced from daily life to his recent captivation with 15th century Indian poetry, which he even recited, Shetty contextualised his sometimes eerie but highly engaging pieces.

He spoke in depth about his motivations behind the 2010 solo exhibition at the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum called This Too Shall Pass, an artistic intervention set against the background of Mumbai's history. From the Tree of Life installation, where visitors were invited to walk through a large arch carved out of a tree with a sword pendulum swinging between the two walkways, to a skeletal rocking horse which discouraged engagement, Shetty's works are not intended to elicit any singular reading; he leaves this completely in the hands of his viewers.

He shared stories about his monumental sculpture in Mumbai, the Flying Bus, commemorating the double decker buses before they are to be phased out of use in Mumbai, and his construction of a life-sized bus made to scale with large stainless steel wings attached. It was on view at Maker Maxity at Bandra Kurla Complex for an extended period. Don’t miss Shetty’s brief interview below with Radha Venkatraman, shot onsite at the artists’s studio, in which he discusses his past inspirations and future projects.  

Reported by Aliya Bhatia, Intern, Asia Society India Centre.

Asia Society India Centre's Rendezvous with the Artist series is generously sponsored by Christie's, the world's leading auction house.