(Last Updated on : 12-08-2014)
Veena Bhargava was born in Shimla in the year 1938. Her parents with the family shifted to the city of Kolkata
in the year 1947. The changing faces of this chaotic city left its impressions on her. She did her art studies at the Government College of Arts & Crafts in Calcutta and completed it in 1962. She studied at the Art Students League in 1960 to 1961 in between for two years. Though she obtained a degree in Art she was unable to pursue art seriously due to the demands of a growing family. She went back to painting in the late '60s when her children were old enough.
She worked primarily with oils and acrylics though she has experimented with many mediums. One of her first experiments was her work with encaustic with textures. In the '80s she created two collections with junk wood and scrap iron from building demolitions. One of these was the result of a workshop with Piloo Pockhanawalla. In 1983 she did a course in photography at Chitrabani in Calcutta. Of late she has been juxtaposing silk screen images with her paintings.
Her work has been figurative predominantly though in the early years she had done some semi-abstract lithoid forms. A decaying city has figured prominently in her works. Architectural elements, urban symbols like a crowded bus, an open manhole, graffiti and posters surface in her works repeatedly. Women iconographies are common in her works. Sometimes she is portrayed as Kali, at other times she is a bound, distorted body or a street performer juggling with the roles in her life. She has also been experimenting with the surface of the painting by adding three-dimensional objects or silk-screen images. She has also introduced mythical and fantasy elements to her strongly expressionistic style of painting.
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