Curatorial Note

For a long time, I have felt stifled by the dictates of the art world.

This show celebrates Spontaneity!

Sometimes you trip!

Your heart tells you to go ahead and the head gives hajaar reasons not to!

Isn’t art about transcending notions?

Every visit to Rahul’s studio, revealed a new medium, a new direction!

In its 25th year – we are so pleased to present yet another artist at the Threshold of a new career!

The emperor is naked!

Tunty Chauhan

Artist Note

Reflecting over what art is, puts me back in a tailspin that created a 30 year gap between my first and only paining made in 1991 and then during the lockdown. I don’t have an academic definition in my head and the heart may not have words to define art but it does decide what I like. True confession – it was comics, fantasy art, sci-fi moves and visits to the zoo that gave my hands a map to trail. A cocktail of ‘envy for their talent’ and ’gratitude for access’ to the many artists I have encountered have fuelled the making of this show. Salut!

As a child I drew comics and got admiration from my unpaid subscribers in the school bus. Sports distracted me during teenage and someone at home bequeathed my comic books to the Kabadiwala’s hall of fame. Living in Connaught place, I would go for friendly half-court basketball games and then walk down to Shridharani Gallery. A vision was emerging – a house full of art when I had my own.

I always scribbled but would unknowingly short circuit the effort once it started to make sense and look good. I would buy art material and neatly store it – like vintage wine rather than material to be put to work. There was always the encouragement from the outside to draw and paint, but it would slip off on the Teflon like self-doubt. And then one day, on the rising tide of life’s ups and downs – the voice within approved my painting and said ‘this is good!’. I did the obvious, ran to the wife and asked if she agreed. She nodded and said, if you’re ready then we shall put it in a frame.

Since then, the voice within says ‘well done’ more often than ‘what a waste’. In studio and at the day job. The paintings are merely by-products of the self-reclamation that transpired in long hours of solitude enforced by the lockdown. As I prepared the palette, I would be thinking of rebuilding my lost business. As I tried new materials, I would think of re-writing the rules by which this business would be built. More importantly, I discovered that jazz music in background and ground coffee beans makes thinking just a wee bit better.

Lack of background and training added trepidation and meant more errors. That monkey is hard to shake off entirely, mistakes are inevitable – so I figured it is best to acknowledge the fear and do it anyway. Since errors often have more to do with benchmarks, just re-set the benchmark. I opted out of self-flagellation, learnt to quickly accept that the sheet of paper or last sales call is an official dud, and get on with making it better the next time.

But for all of this chant and rhetoric of positivity, one still needs a believer. Enter Gallery Threshold. Unfiltered in appreciation and critique, and quick to decide – she invited me to put myself out to the world. Bit like Rocky getting a shot out at the world title, out of nowhere. Thankfully I won’t be getting into a ring with Apollo Creed.  So here I am, sharing a few duds, a few ‘well tried’ and hopefully, couple of ‘wows’!


Threshold Gallery

C-221 Sarvodaya Enclave,

New delhi – 110017

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