Date- 13th January – 12th February 2022
Venue- Art & Soul, 1 Madhuli, Shiv Sagar Estate, Dr Annie Besant Rd, Worli, Mumbai, Maharashtra 400018
Thursday 13th Jan // Opening Day [Mumbai Gallery Weekend] preview timings are 11am – 8 pm
Santanu Hazarika has carved a name for himself in the world of visual art. His art is instantly recognizable and has a spontaneous recall value for trademark affinity towards creating fluidic visceral imagery. His monochromatic visual vocabulary is rooted in popular culture. The iconography is informed by an early exposure to art forms as varied as graphic novels, street art, sci-fi, animé, video games, fantasy, dark humor, metal music and mythology. These influences give form and color to experiences from his life. He is one of the fastest selling artists on the NFT platform, in a record time of 37 secs.
Winner of the world’s first Red Bull World Doodle Art Champion in 2014, amongst an entry of 32,000 from all over the world ‘BLCK’ is Santanu’s first ever debut solo show emerges as an exhibit of a phenomenon that presents a practice which is an enigma of the person who creates visual networks of personal histories, video gaming, popular culture and the skill to draw. It’s our moment for an art form to emerge from our interiors crafted and scripted by a genius image maker. Drawing heavily on Santanu’s love for monochromatic work, BLCK is all set to be a month-long iconic display of black & white pieces that unsettle and challenge audience perceptions.
The 29-year-old self-taught artist views himself as a visual creator who transits seamlessly between design projects and art for art’s sake Santanu Hazarika says, “BLCK is an extension of my turbulent existence and the contentment it brings to me. I began my practice using the deep black tones of India Ink, so when you doodle using black ink, the metascape it allows is very graphic, there are no tonal qualities you rather depend on the ability to sketch, it absorbs light. BLCK is a reflection on my artistic practice, it absorbs popular culture into intertwined vines of hands, skulls, human bodies and images that mirror our minds, the chaos that descends into our bodies from the images that we consume. Emotionally driven and violently molded, BLCK is an invitation into my world of comfortable turbulence.”
Artist Curator Bina Aziz says, “Santanu is the New Age artist in this era of Digital Art and NFT’s. When I first met Santanu, his mind full of high energy and imagination, fascinated me. His head was spinning with ideas and thoughts which needed to be projected.I wanted his talent showcased to the outside world, which formed the reason for this show. BLCK is going to be a game changer in the world of art..of how we think and perceive art. It promises to be a fascinating experience for all art lovers as they visit the exhibition and walk through Santanu’s mind. He is definitely the artist to look out for in 2022!”
Tarana Khubchandani, Director, Art & Soul says, “My first interaction with the reticent yet highly personable and charming Santanu Hazarika, left me intrigued. As I familiarized myself with his visual language I found myself further intrigued about his inspiration, his muse, so to speak. Santanu’s powerful imagery stems from a mind that is influenced strongly by the written word, by music and by the graphic world of video games it inhabits. Art & Soul invites you to BLCK as we recreate the fascinating mindscape of Santanu Hazarika.”
Art Critic Jasmine Shah Verma says, “Santanu Hazarika’s monochromatic visual vocabulary is rooted in popular culture. The iconography is informed by an early exposure to art forms as varied as graphic novels, street art, sci-fi, animé, video games, fantasy, dark humor, metal music and mythology. These influences give form and color to experiences from his life.The 29-year-old self-taught artist views himself as a visual creator who transits seamlessly between design projects and art for art’s sake. He says, “I can draw and I implement it everywhere.” So far Santanu’s craft has been noted for varied assignments that include designing and illustrating for showroom murals, cricket team buses, shoes, cars and music albums.In this debut solo exhibition of works on canvas he expresses not just the innermost musings but also gives a glimpse into the creative thought process behind his artistic journey thus far..”
About Santanu Hazarika
Hailing from the state of Assam, Santanu Hazarika is a multidisciplinary autodidact visual artist based in Mumbai. He dropped out of engineering to become the first ever Redbull World Doodle Art Champion in 2014. In a short span of few years, Santanu has a substantial roster of clients such as Red Bull International, Adidas, Reebok, Harper’s, NDTV, Ministry of Culture, Gully Gang, Azadi records, Ritviz, Nucleya, Major Lazer and hip-hop artists Raftaar , Divine among many others.He is also one of the pioneers of the NFT revolution in India , with his collaborative NFT with Ritviz selling as one of the fastest nfts ever sold,in a record time of 37 secs. Starting from murals to cars to sneakers, his art has painted almost every conventional and unconventional canvases. From group shows across the world to conducting workshops in the heart of Siberia, Santanu is the perfect example of a self-taught, independent artist.
Photography by @buzzookha & Teej Datar