Satheesh Paul

Residency: Aspirus 04 – 05

16 July – 27 August 2013



Colours and paints have been the passion of Satheesh Paul (India/Bahrain) since childhood. His use of geometry and sharp lines creates bold iconic work. Each figurative piece conveys an original narrative with emotionally intense effects. Colours and techniques are regarded as a source of inspiration, a driving force, since he feels that his motivation towards the visual expression of his thought and experience naturally evolves to take the form of his abstract, mostly figurative works.

He does not have the will to work on a painting everyday, and here are times when the strongest of his inner feelings finds realisation in a small pencil sketch, which might never translate into a bigger canvas. In the past, strong reds, blues and yellows emerged as the paintings developed, but this emphasis has shifted over time, as he explains, “The brooding state of my mind seems to be passed. Now I am re-discovering the warmth of colours”

Paul realises his themes as paint on canvas, crayon and graphic prints, often accompanied by poetic titles. He has also intensely researched different media and techniques, and has spent time experimenting with mica sheet and X-ray film, use of which has become a parallel practice to his painting and drawing. Whatever the medium, colour is important. Muted and subdued hues contrast with striking, bold highlights adding to the powerful imagery, and the intensity of emotions.

Paul’s strong individual style expresses a contemplative nature, Graphic prints, and dynamic works of paint on canvas and crayon on board possess a soothing and introspective subtlety. Avoiding the distracting noise of excess and clutter, Paul’s bold language of representation stretches the figurative into the abstract. The works are often dominated by centralised oblong shapes. These multilayered, multi-hued forms appear to ‘wrap’ against an off-white ground. Out of these larger structures, stylised images of human life emerge and recede back into the obscure. Masculine and feminine pairs, often engaged in a symbolic embrace or epitomised as a dance of opposite and equal forces, are a recurring motif.