Published: 27th July 2021
Seven artworks from Chitkara University, Punjab will be on display during the Tokyo Olympics. Here's why it matters
Out of 52 paintings selected for a virtual show at the Tokyo Olympics Memorial Gallery, these seven from Chitkara University are putting out an important message of global solidarity
Tokyo Olympics 2020 is finally underway, in what are dangerous circumstances for the athletes and host Japan itself, thanks to the raging pandemic. Nevertheless, the Games are underway and we are witnessing superhuman feats of talent and grit, and glory by the athletes. The Tokyo Olympics Memorial Gallery, which houses souvenirs from the Olympics past, and pays tribute to the display of the highs and lows of sport will also play a virtual art show called 'Olympia,' submitted by the Indian Contemporary Artist Association (ICAA).
Out of the 52 artworks on display in the video, seven belong to artists from Chitkara University, Punjab. "The Olympics are being conducted in a bleak scenario right now, and the pandemic has made it worse. Athletes must be anxious, and they probably did not have time to prepare too much either. This is why, we at Chitkara University made it a point to create artworks that can cheer on and encourage artists from across the globe, not just India," said Dean of Chitkara Design School, Ranjan Kumar Mallik. Malik's digital painting, titled 'Me and My Olympics' was also selected for the video.
Dilip Tirkey, Former Indian Hockey Captain and Sanjib Biswal, Secretary, Indian Contemporary Artist Association, inaugurate the virtual art show
The ICAA is based out of Cuttack, Odisha. Its Co-founder and secretary, Sanjib Biswal applied to the Organising Committee of the Tokyo Olympics, and once they got the go ahead a month ago, ten artists from Chitkara Design School, among many others from across India got to work, creating pieces for the virtual show. Seven were selected from among the ten. Prof Mallik says that the project had the backing and encouragement of former India Hockey captain, Dilip Tirkey. Those selected incorporated many a method of painting, including watercolour, oil painting and digital art. Student Diksha Raghav's 'Moods of Glory' combined digital art with physical drawing. "We tried to incorporate the feeling of euphoria that an athlete feels from being at the Olympics. Student Piyush Anand's painting does just that," says Prof Malik, who has been a professional artist for some years now. PhD scholars Alisha Sharma, Abhijit Mohanty and Rakesh Kumar Chaudhary also had their paintings selected. Dr Arjun Kumar Singh's 'The Runner' was a painting done in charcoal.
"This pandemic has brought the world together, because it has been tough on everyone, both mentally and physically. And to the athletes competing under such circumstances, we want to say, 'artists are with you'," signs off Malik.