A mélange of art
On a bright sunny morning an artist had been
wandering around Lake Diyawanna and after finding a
location to work on his art he had settled with his
canvas and paint brush. Alas his focus was disturbed
by a group of army personnel and who had started
questioning him about his business near Lake
Diyawanna. After learning the artist’s purpose near
Lake Diyawanna he was left free to do his job.
The result of this incident was an art
exhibition. “After that disturbance, thoughts
started flowing into my mind and I wanted to portray
not only the beauty of the lake but how it stands
amidst the political, societal changes. I wanted to
explore the beauty of Diyawanna in a new dimension,”
said artist Susil Senanayake.
Susil said he is inspired by what he sees everyday.
He noted that nature, everyday happenings in the
country become food for thought and objects of
inspiration for his creations. It was clear that he
is an artist who appreciates nature as all paintings
on the canvas bore illustrations of the lake with
bold and thick brush strokes. However he had broken
the monotonous pattern of the lake’s illustrations
by portraying it different angles.
This intriguing collection of paintings was on
display at the Lionel Wendt Art Gallery on June 18
and 19, 2011. Susil who is a professional artist, is
a graduate from Visual Arts Faculty of the
University of Visual and Performing Arts. He said he
is willing to explore new ideas and new styles. The
paintings of Diyawanna Lake is one such attempt by
Susil as he said he wanted to exhibit features of
modern art in his latest collection.
Great artists like Vandort and Andrew Nicholls have
created breathtaking illustrations of landscapes and
Susil’s attempt in this exhibition had been to
explore landscape illustration while depicting them
in different angels. He has used a striking colour
to depict the central landscape and other mat
colours are used to illustrate the shades of the
All these landscape illustrations’ dark colours
are at the lower part of the canvas which gives a
depth to the pictures like the silent depth in Lake
The illustrations contain both dark and bright
coloured contexts and in some paintings he has just
used black cloudlike images which have a transparent
quality. All these variations to the initial
landscape; the areas around Lake Diyawanna
explicitly show how Susil has seen the Diyawanna in
social, political and artistic contexts.
The exhibition was indeed a journey to a new ground
and it further proved that artists have both the
ability and liberty to see and display their
interpretations of imagery which we pass everyday in
an indifferent manner.
(Pix by Ravindra Dharmathilake)