Rajnish Chhanesh

Rajnish Chhanesh

Artist Bio

Rajnish Chhanesh was born in 1984 in New Delhi. He completed his BFA in painting from Jamia Millia Islamia University in 2007 and MFA in painting from College of Art, Delhi University in 2009. He has exhibited in various group shows including: ‘The Contemporary Walk’ in Vivanta by Taj Ambassador Hotel, Delhi with Gallery Ragini in 2017; Nature Connect group show in Hungarian International Culture Center, Delhi with Arts4All in 2017; Western Ghats Eco Walk: An Interactive Art Project in 2017; ‘Templates’ in Hotel Dubai Mariate, Dubai with Gallery Ragini in 2016 and a solo show ‘Voices Etched in Stone’ by Gallery Ragini, Alliance Francaise, Delhi in 2015. He has also received Lalit Kala Akademi National Scholarship in 2011-12 and H.K Kejriwal Young Artist Award in 2010. Rajnish lives and works in New Delhi.

Artist Statement

Rajnish Chhanish works on a style which demands him to intensely research historical identities with its present day state and explore traditional styles of art making from which explodes an entirely new language of its own, a bridge which negotiates the past with the present. This is done in such a fluid manner that both influences can be seen but the language itself is unique and lyrical in its contemporary form.

Having a familial conversation with local historic architecture and having studied monuments and also helping restore them, catapulted his knowledge on the subject where the stone architecture and its intricacies spoke of neglect, a past glory unrealized and a disassociation of the present world of the value of its past on whose foundations it stands.

The use of the traditional way of making foliage and the lack of perspective, as was done in the traditional miniatures, takes place here as well. It makes the viewer wonder if he is pulled to the past or is present in the distraught today with the flat forms one sees now. From beneath the lyricism of the beauty of the work rise the strong voices of disjointed associations with the present where there is neglect and non engagement with these histories and identities, the very entities which built who we are today.

As one views Chhanish’s works in wonder, the mystery and contradictions of modern day living with its disregard to life, its insensitivities and its injustice to past heritage are revealed from its layers and the comment is discovered and rediscovered. This discovery is not morose but is strong in its stand and at the same time mellow and poetic in its beauty.