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The Enshrined Object : Nagji Patel – Sculptures and Drawings

The Enshrined Object : Nagji Patel – Sculptures and Drawings

Title: The Enshrined Object : Nagji Patel – Sculptures and Drawings
Pages : 186
Year : 2008
Text : Essays by Roobina Karode, Nilima Sheikh and Gulammohammed Sheikh

Extract :

“To Nagji, the unity of all life and the integration of man and nature are all part of the same thing. He had grown up in a place where the Hindus and Muslims lived an integrated life and belonged to a religious sect called molesallams. There were common celebrations for Id and Diwali and mourning during Muharram. There were rituals performed to guard evil and epidemics from entering the village: kumkum was sprinkled on the implements before tilling and sowing. Along with the farmers, carpenters and coppersmiths helped retain the self-sufficiency of the village. In contrast to his experience of life, the formal curriculum of ordinary high school was not the most exciting education for Nagji. With his below average scores at school he really had little hope to qualify for college. Indecisive about whether he should join the Faculty of Fine Arts in the city of Baroda or take up a cooperative job, he ended up in Bombay running his brother’s paan-bidi shop. Temperamentally unsuited to the boring job of being in one place rolling tobacco to make bidis, he gave up the shop-keeping vocation. He hoped to become a ticket collector on a train or a bus for his livelihood, but perhaps Nagji was destined to be an artist. He returned to Baroda and enrolled in Sculpture, a language that since his formative years came naturally to him. Later, despite his formal training, his rural upbringing remained instrumental in his urban practice.”

 

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