Ragini Upadhyaya-Grela comes out with an appeal for amity in her latest exhibition
By NEERAJ POUDEL
Ragini's painting: Picture of peace The last one and a half years have been tumultuous, to say the least. Whether on the domestic or international front, events so tragic and so barbaric have happened in this period that many an artist has been passionately moved. Ragini Upadhyaya-Grela is one such painter who, after being disturbed by the events, chose to vent her pent-up feelings through the media she is best accustomed with. Ragini, a reputed artist known for her distinctive styles, highly symbolic and thematic presentations, displayed scores of paintings she had made after being overcome with emotions following the three major events of the last 15 months - the June 1, 2001 royal palace tragedy, the 9/11 attacks and the destruction of Bamiyan Buddhas. After organizing more than 30 solo and several group exhibitions including international ones, she came out this week with her latest works titled "The Sun Never Dies, Buddha's Light and Truth Shines". The exhibition, which opened at the Siddhartha Art Gallery on August 16, will continue until September 15. The title of the exhibition is enough to summarize her works. Mainly, they revolve around the three dreadful events of the last 15 months, which have left a deep imprint on the psychology of people all over the world. Among her 29 paintings, "Buddha on 1st June", "Eleventh September" and "Bamiyan Buddha 2001" respectively demonstrate an artist's perspectives on these events. Her other works also support the theme of the paintings and are replete with their own peculiarities. The artist presents the sun as a symbol of truth that never dies. Explaining her work titled "Eye of Truth", she said, "Truth is the sun which has so many eyes to see." She compares it with a human eye, and she has painted it in her canvas. Moreover, her concern for peace can be seen in each of her paintings. She says that the events are a blow to humanity and culture. "We have forgotten the path to truth, wisdom and peace", she said. She has made an appeal for peace through her exclusive and heart-rending art. Her paintings explore the trouble and agony of peace lovers around the world whenever mankind is faced with such violent events. Among her works, "Truth Never Dies", "Buddha, Truth and Sun", "Buddha's Feet", "Eye of Truth", "Eleventh September", and "Bamiyan Buddha 2001" drew the attention of most of the spectators. One viewer responded that the artist was quite successful in delivering the message of peace.