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KATHMANDU, Nov 12: As 35th American President John Fitzgerald Kennedy had said, “Mankind must put an end to war, or war will put an end to mankind,” a solo art exhibition by Mann Gurung kicked off on November 8 at Siddhartha Art Gallery, Babar Mahal with theme ‘power, politics and war’.
This is Mann’s first ever solo art exhibition. “Half million civilians, including 11,000 children have been victims of war between the government and rebel forces in Syria within the last five years. Therefore, I have tried to raise the global issue that war is not the solution through my artworks,” said Mann.
As many as 32 paintings, where Mann has used the background of wars in Syria as motifs through oil, sketches and acrylic, are being showcased at the exhibition.
As part of a series, ‘Humanity 101-III’ portrays the realistic scenario of Syria, where civilians are trapped between the government and rebel forces. “I have used oil painting in my works as it gives a natural texture.”
Similarly, ‘Mankind 101-II’ depicts the weaknesses of a patriarchal society as the painting shows damaged faces of women due to acid attack at the top and raped women at the bottom.
Despite having a bachelor’s degree from Nepal, Mann also pursued bachelor’s in Studio Art at the University of Nebraska at Omaha and graduated with a Magna Cum Laude Honors Extra Muros in 2007. He recently completed his master degree in Fine Arts from Tribhuvan University in 2017. All of his works are influenced by 19th century academic artists such as Édouard Mane and Pierre Mallet. Therefore, viewers can also find the classicism and realism in his arts.
Sandhaya Silwal, an artist and visitor at the exhibition, said, “I got to see such unique and fine works of art after a long time. The paintings give me the sense of entering into an artist’s book. The color harmony has also made the paintings more impressive.”
Krishna Gopal Shrestha and Satya Shila, other visitors at the exhibit, also admired Gurung’s work and said they liked the way he had played with different oil colors. Shrestha, the artist himself said, “All of his paintings and sketches are technically excellent and brilliant content wise. The use of mild colors has given his paintings a sweetness, which is neither too bright nor too dull.”
The solo art exhibit is slated to continue till November 27.
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