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‘Besar’: Reflection of contemporary society
L Bazra Lama’s solo painting exhibition titled ‘Besar’ began at LA Gallery, Bauddha on Wednesday. A total of 13 conceptual paintings are on display where he has used social issues such as abortion, suicide, constitution, and politics among others as his theme for the exhibition.
In the painting 'Hanging fetus', he has painted a tree inspired by jack fruit tree and instead of jack fruit, it bears the fetus. Aesthetically, it is pleasant while getting to the concept, it symbolizes today's world. Life has been taken as a product and some fetuses are killed because they were females while others got killed simply because they were the outcome of unprotected sex — they were not a life but a result of pleasure. His paintings evoke the viewers to delve into the deeper meaning of life and death.
Similarly, with death as its primary concept, Lama was inspired by a Belgian surrealist artist, Rene Magritte’s ‘Falling Men’; he painted ‘Irresponsible’.
In this painting, he has painted dead people who had hung themselves and they are seen hanging on the backdrop of Birendra International Convention Center (BICC) where meetings of the House of Representatives take place.
About the painting he explains, “In Nepal, people aged from 18 to 33 attempt the maximum number of suicides in comparison to other age groups. I believe this is the most powerful phase of life, where you have strength to take responsibilities, but people choose different ways for solutions. Suicide is not the solution. However, still we can’t deny the truth— people being irresponsible toward life and government being irresponsible toward them and their problems such as unemployment, discrimination, etc. Parliament in the painting represents the government. The issue is directly or indirectly connected to the government.”
Then, his painting 'On the way to heaven' is a satire against those who break the traffic rules where one can see Lord Yama (god of death) taking the people in his vehicle buffalo and it becomes difficult for it to travel.
When asked what is death for him? He answers, “Death is a universal truth which no one can deny but it’s wrong to end one’s life untimely. Death comes in its own time and one does not have the right to kill others or even themselves.”
Each painting at the exhibition is different from the other. The artist has metaphorically connected the title of the exhibition to his paintings. Besar is known for its anti-biotic characteristics for our body and through his paintings, he is conveying the same message.
He says, "If you pay attention to the issues I have tried to show, then these paintings will definitely play a role of Besar. If not then, it may remain as paintings forever."
In Lama's perspective, art is not a personal thing, but a common factor to experience. He has used humor to connect the bridge between his art and the viewers. They can feel the connection when they see their own stories in the paintings; otherwise, it will just be paintings.
The exhibition continues till September 22.
- by Sangita Shrestha
- by Sangita Shrestha