Pratiksha Apurv: The meditative artist

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Pratiksha Apurv’s recent exhibition highlights her journey into mysticism, writes Parul Leekha. Published in The Hindu, March 27, 2018

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The Divine Yogin
Contemplative creations: Divine Yogin

For any art form to flourish, creativity is an indispensable aspect. What makes Pratiksha Apurv, recipient of National Award in 2016 for her painting titled “Cosmic Balance”, a unique artist is that she draws her creativity from meditation.

With themes like “timelessness”, “living in the moment”, “transcending energy”, and “healing through colours”, the series of paintings at her recently concluded exhibition “Mystical Moments” at the Lalit Kala Akademi, was an attempt to express her inner journey as a mystic.


On the genesis of the exhibition

I kept the title “Mystical Moments” because this is my inner journey. I have tried to paint whatever I have experienced during meditation. And in those experiences, I found inner bliss as well. So, many of my paintings tell the story of my experiences. I was fortunate to have been born and brought up in a family where I was introduced to meditation as a child.

I started meditating since the age of 11. When I first heard about beyond senses, the idea amazed me. After practising it for six months, one fine day I knew my inner world totally.

On her painting “Divine Yogin”

In the past many mystic and enlightened women did not get their due recognition. I wanted women like Meera Rabia, Mallibai and Sahajo among others, to have equal space in society on par with the men. These female mystics have no temples and no large followings like those of male saints and deities. People could not understand them and hence they were not as recognised as their male counterparts. This painting is just an attempt to relocate the position of women from the margins to the centre.


On the influence of uncle Osho’s philosophy on her art

I live Osho, I breathe Osho, I drink Osho. He is in my blood, in my being, in my genes. He is everything for me because he has given so much to humanity. But people could not understand him because he was ahead of his time. Now people are trying to understand his teachings. I did not believe his teachings completely until I experimented everything on myself.

When I was a fashion designer I was equally happy as I experienced the outer world. But it was something I was doing for others. When I realised the need to do something for myself, I started painting. I could closely identify with Osho’s concept of “Zorba the Buddha”, where Zorba stands for the outer richness and Buddha for the inner richness. He wanted his disciples to have a combination of both, a balance of inner and outer richness. I have earned enough from my fashion designing. This is something I am doing for my inner richness.

On her affinity towards the science of meditation

It is actually a science, when you can understand that one can really go beyond the mind. People who have experienced it can vouch for it. Nothing matters at that time because you’re in a different world. Sometimes it is very difficult to express in words the things one experiences during meditation.

An hour of self-introspection will lead to a change in our quality of living. I am equally concerned for the new generation. Happiness is going away. I feel that it is the responsibility of parents and teachers to look for the inherent talents of their children rather than imposing their own ambitions on them. Every individual is unique. Uniqueness is the beauty of our existence. There should be some kind of change in the education system as children are our future.

On painting as a liberating art form

I knew nothing about painting because I had no technical training when I started. I paint daily for eight hours but it is not like work for me. It is more of a “sadhana” or meditation for me. I am never tired of it. People often tell me that I should not work on Sundays, but painting does not feel like work.

Pratiksha ApurvPratiksha Apurv –

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