Valentine Art Affection

on Sunday, February 13, 2011

For the past twenty years of my life, which is the whole of my life actually, I had made myself believe that I loathe colors. I still do, yes, especially the bright, opulent shades, specifically in the segment of clothing. I am definitely not a member of the gawsy brigade, those people who try to project offending cheerfulness through the clothes they wear. I like to live life in more sombre shades. I prefer to dress up in grays and dull blues. I even like my pictures in black and white, or at max, sepia.

So, when I put up this picture as the my blog's header sometime back, doubling up as my blogs identity, I was initially skeptical of my own decision. But then, the colors in this painting wielded their magic. I was literally stupefied, and left to gape at it in mute admiration. So, there it remained, adorning my blog, making it look pretty.

I often develop a child-like fondness for things. From a child's perspective, everything appears big, appears magnified. So is the case with me. The moment I become fond of something, I attach to it many superlatives which totally justify my predilection towards it. When this painting started hypnotysing me and its colors began coruscating in my dreams, I, besides extolling its beauty in, again, superlative terms, was living under the illusion that this is one-of-its-kind painting, and that I may never come across another like it. However, my myth was soon dispelled by the contemporary divine entity- Google- which has answers to all questions we ask, sometimes even those questions which we don't ask.

A few days back, I stumbled upon this picture. Purely by chance.

The style of painting seemed similar to the one on my blog. Even though I am no connoisseur of art forms of any kind, the ease with which the artist had played with colors seemed very familiar, identical even to the painting that had so far been ruling my mind. After probing a little more, with a few random keywords, on, of course, the monolith of all information, Google, I was able to trace the painter who painted both the above beauties. And, many more.

Leonid Afremov- A search by his name on Google images opened a whole world of unbelievable splashes of color in front of my eyes. For more than an hour, I just kept on staring at his different creations. Just looking at his painting made me happy. Many of them were similar. I guess this Belarusian painter has a penchant for painting boulevards, with couples walking down the road. His paintings have immense depth. I could imagine myself walking down the same boulevard with my love. Two of my most favorite paintings of this category (besides the one on my blog's header) are these.

As I look at these paintings, I can't help but once again marvel at the blend of colors in them. In the both these, what I especially like is the way the lamp light is softly illuminating the scene.

Besides painting long roads and multi hued trees lining them, Leonid Afremov also has a clear proclivity towards paintings couples. Couples, presumably in love, appear on most of his canvases. I should not use the word 'presumably' here. His couples are visibly in love, often, passionately in love. And this, is conveyed very elegantly in his paintings. Check out these two for example.

So this Valentines, because I have nothing better to do, I will allow this brilliant artist's grand creations to haunt me. Event though I adore the above two paintings, these are not exactly the ones I would like to see in my dreams. The ones, which actually transport me into a dream land are the ones which depict couples with more subtler shades of passion engulfing them. In fact, in those paintings, what is depicted in place of passion is togetherness- long enduring togetherness, the kind of companionship I could kill for.

The first painting is may be the kind of Valentine's date I would want for myself- a private time together, in each other's casual embrace, discussing a million things which make us perfect for each other, confessing and reconfessing our love and completely losing ourself to the beauty of the moment.

The second painting is titled "The Last Date", and hence, for comprehensible reasons, makes me feel sad. Love forms an indispensable part of my existence, and whenever love is wounded, I can't help but feel sad.

Anyway. Hats off to Leonid Afremov. I hope that someday I am able to buy at least one of his creations, because I have turned into a big, incorrigible admirer of his. For all the right reasons for sure.
(Thanks for making me fall in love with colors again)