THEN AND NOW, a solo exhibition by Alakananda Mukerji, will be presented by the Blue Mountain Gallery, from January 31 to February 25, with a special opening reception February 2, 6-8pm, and a closing reception February 25, 3-6pm. Murkerji's work is defined as aesthetic activism as she is interested in changing herself and others through the practice and discipline of making art. The images in Mukerji's artwork are a fusion of tradition and current contemporary concepts. Her artwork is inspired by memory, observation and a connection to New York City. Her artwork is evidence of her passport to numerous countries that she has visited. These countries are her connection with the many people that find their way to New York City.
Mukerji grew up on the River Ganges. She says: "I have long since left the narrow streets of Benaras where life is awash in a flood of color and a constant stream of souls. Yet however so far I may find myself from those ancient riverbanks, my memory, my art, and indeed my very being -- these are forever caught up in the notion of endless, sacred flow. People and faces, the surge of sounds, the unfathomably old commingling with the untarnishedly new -- all the rhythms and rhymes of India: this is the wellspring of who I am. Memories, media, materials -- bits of canvas, pieces of the past -- anything I can get hold of: this is my art. I am the medium. I am the flow."
The artwork of Alakananda Mukerji, presents itself as an aesthetic intervention between recollections and decisive actions. Her content is compelling; it attracts her viewer and then suggests action. Often that action is internal and at times it helps the viewer to reconnect with the world outside. Both her attention to color and the lack of color create a composition that is reminiscence of a composer using the absence of sounds to emphasize the attentiveness of other sounds. Her figures are reconstructions of studies of the human form; they suggest a psychology that is both familiar to her viewers and yet very personal to the artist. Mukerji's art bring us closer to her experiences while connecting us to our own experiences.
Alakananda Mukerji is Professor and Chair of the Studio Art Department at Manhattanville College. She has exhibited in the New York City region as well as India and Japan. Additional images and information can be found at www.bluemountaingallery.org or by calling 646-486-4730.
This event is free and open to the public at 530 West 25th Street -- Located between 10th and 11th Ave.