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Dhiraj Shrikrishnarao Hadole, hailed from Amravati, Maharshtra, born on 19th November, 1985 is residing in Mumbai at present. He established his art studio in Thane almost two decades ago during his degree in Bachelor in Fine Arts in Painting in 2004. After completing his Bachelor’s Degree he pursued his Masters in Archaeology from University of Mumbai, Maharashtra in 2013. Dhiraj holds an extensive list of group shows including state, national and international level from 2004 onwards. Besides this he has bagged numerous awards including All India Camel Colour Contest award continuously from 1997 to 1999 and in 2001. In 2004 he accomplished Best Photography Award from Shivaji Chitrakala Mahavidyalaya, Amravati and Best 2D Design Award in the Annual Art Exhibition of Sir J.J. School of Arts, Mumbai in 2007.
In a first glance Dhiraj’s paintings appear very simple but if we look intensely at his works and try to understand them, then hidden depths are there. Like the artist‘s name, Dhiraj which means patience, his works also inherent with diligence, and arcane. As a matter of fact, his works are more nuanced and subtle than that and are the result of a thoughtful process of his nostalgia. As he found more concerned himself with the old memories of his childhood where he used to watch over his grandmother stitching quilts (known as Gudari in Maharashtra) from the rags of those old cloths which were once new and bright in colours with stiffness. Basically these cloths, once were the parts of nauvari (nine yards) sarees and other garments, especially made of cotton which are quite vibrant in colours. But in course of time these cloths loss all their charm and beauty and gradually becomes soften with faded shades and began to deteriorate. In spite of disposing, women used to make beautiful quilts with the patchworks by using these old clothes. In Dhiraj’s opinion women are the most balanced creation of God. These quilts made in patch work as a factor, is the main inspiration to his practice. He adds that while watching his granny busy in making these rags quilts he noticed that she used to cut out the torn and inadequate parts and use those chunks only which were strong and durable. And she has adopted this same behavior in her life also. As ignoring the negativity of the people, she used to seek their goodness only. The artist also depicts the same things in his oeuvre. His paintings are basically painted installation in which the shades are mattified and assembled in multiple hues on the canvas. He prepares his own canvasses in various sizes and assembles them in a desiring shape and uses monochromatic shades. These works are somewhere deeply connected with the multiple layers of the quilts and have been beautifully covered with the final sheathe of a cloth which is full of stiches of multiple shades of threads and geometric patterns. These impeccable stitches move swiftly in a particular direction which not only show the continuity but also enhance the exquisiteness of his works in a great deal.
Dhiraj’s oeuvre reflects his calm nature and the complex composition of the canvasses reflects his indulgence of the depth of thinking process. The works done by him cannot be judged merely as the depiction of the most ordinary household activity of females. His paintings defy the adaptation and depiction of complicated things and are the juxtaposition of formal geometric designs and shapes felicitously.
Dr. Anju Bala
(Art Historian & Assistant Professor,
Guru Gobind Singh College for Women, Chandigarh)