Shanthi Chandrasekar

Artist
Independent
Maryland, USA

As a multimedia and multidisciplinary visual artist, my art-making process usually consists of exploration and experimentation of ideas based on scientific, mathematical and philosophical enquiry, along with the freedom of artistic license. I enjoy finding patterns, similarities, and symmetries inherent in our universe and also between seemingly unrelated fields. Traditional art forms, philosophical ideas, and scientific concepts that have mathematical principles underlying them are juxtaposed in this artistic journey.


Kolam-Aditya
100 x 75 cm
Acrylic on Canvas
2018

Tamil women in India create kolams every day at twilight on the floor in front of their houses using powdered rice or rock. These traditional patterns are made of dots and lines that are drawn freehand without the help of any tools. Though the designs are mostly created with aesthetics in mind, there is an underlying mathematical and philosophical significance to these patterns. Math concepts such as symmetries, fractals and networks inspired the Kolam-Aditya painting. I used circles to create an isometric grid and then connected the dots to form equilateral triangles, regular hexagons and 6-point stars, which are basic kolam patterns. I further connected these shapes to create more complex patterns.


Kolam-Aishwarya
100 x 75 cm
Acrylic on Canvas
2018

Though most kolams can be an artistic expression for Tamil women, there are some that are special like the Aishwarya Kolam. It is made from an isometric grid that is usually drawn freehand on the ground following the notation of 3, 6, 7, 8, 7, 6, 3 dots arranged horizontally and the dots are connected to create the pattern. In this painting, I have explored the fractal nature of the design and also extended it by repeating the pattern and connecting them with each other to create a network.