Life in square circles
Left to right standing Rohitha and Senake,
seated left to right Jeewantha, Roshan and Ajith
The square is a strange figure. There are triangles, circles, rectangles
and various geometric shapes in this world. However, something we do not
realize is that we live within our own squares and that we are trapped
inside them. Sometimes, we come out of them, only to return to them
again. We associate with squares, live with squares, breath within
squares, and work within squares. It has no end. But, in this
contemporary connotation of squares, there are constructive aspects too.
A square is a belief. And the exhibition Squares conducted by five
undergraduates showcased the talent, faith and the love for water
colours, still prevalent in this world.
“Today, though many people use water colours, they do not know the
proper techniques. Even in schools, most students use water colours
without knowing the techniques. It is not about just covering the canvas
with colours but, of giving colour to the canvas. Every stroke has
passion and meaning. It was our desire to impart this technique to the
outside world. To make people aware of it and to enlighten them of what
water colours truly are. What it can do. So, with this intention, we
formed a square, and got ourselves into it. Now, the five of us are on a
journey, to take water colours into the world. Maybe, with time, five
turn out to ten, then twenty, and so on, it will be enhanced. This
square that we are in, will improve with time while are objective will
remain unchanged. We want to improve the knowledge of water colours and
this Square will continue to grow,” said Senake, one of the five
All five of them are studying art at the Visual Arts Faculty. To an
artist, art is life. Its definition changes from individual to
individual. Soul talked to members of the Square to explore their world
within this square, to see what motivates them, and as to what ‘art’
means to them, within a square.
Ajith is a third-year student at the university. His art is mostly
landscapes, of villages and the rural beauty. “Surrounded with split
colours” was the slogan written about his art. “I paint with brush
strokes, what my eyes capture. It is what I perceive that I paint. The
thought develops into art, and sometimes imagination also gets painted
into colours and textures on the canvas. If my mind perceives beauty in
a contemporary situation, I capture it on canvas.
Roshan is also in his third year. “I’m free with strokes”, reads his
slogan. “I like to capture, what my eyes see, in a couple of strokes. I
want others to see, what I see. Roads, busy streets, daily traffic, and
the routine of life. The morning, as I see it, and the afternoon as it
comes to me, I capture it all in my brush and paint it on the canvas.
When I see people with busy routines, it inspires me. It maybe just a
couple of strokes but, in those strokes, as I move the brush, my life
keeps pace with it. Every stroke of my brush, draws life into me and
gives me pleasure. Its not just a hobby, it’s a way of life.”
Senake is the guy who came up with the idea to create the Square. His
slogan says, “There are colours in me, now I’m in colours” Colours are
beautiful. I love colours. They create illusions but, I still love them.
When I came upon this slogan, I wanted to know what Seneke meant, and I
asked him, he said, “I live in colours, my life is inside colours
because, I spend time with them. I try to paint the actual hardships of
life. Today, everyone is running after something. Trying to hold on to
what they treasure. Touch what they love. Feel what is lacking in their
lives. The struggle never ends and the distance, only seems to grow. I
paint what I see.” He added.
Unlike the rest, Jeewantha is in his second year. His creations depict
the daily life of people and what they are subject to. His slogan reads,
“Art begins suddenly and from nothing. To me, art is created without any
effort. It is a medium where one could express one’s freedom of thought.
I want to present what I see with a difference, in a way that would
evoke pleasure in others.” he said.
Rohitha’s paintings mostly capture themes of landscapes and human
figures. “What I feel is what I see” his slogan said, “I try to convey
what I see, via my paintings. It could be a memory or, a situation that
captured my attention. What I feel is what I see, the way things appear
to me, and I hope people understand what I convey in my paintings.”
Each of these artists exhibited twelve paintings, with a total of 60
paintings, at the Squares held at the National Art Gallery. The
exhibition will be held every year and hopefully, their aim will be
fulfilled. However, it does not alter the fact, that life is a square,
where we are all trapped within our own squares. Nevertheless, at least,
in this instance, these youthful artists seem to be giving colour to
their own squares.