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Rekha Rao

Bangalore, India Born 1947
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Studied painting under artist father K.K. Hebbar

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Sumukha Gallery, Bangalore (2006); Cymroza Gallery, Mumbai (2006); Forum Art Gallery, Chennai (2006); Vinyasa Art Gallery, Bangalore, Mumbai and Delhi (2005); Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai (2003); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (2001); Renaissance Gallery, Bangalore (2000); San Tache Art Gallery,Mumbai (2000); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (1996); Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai (1995); Dhoomimal Gallery, New Delhi (1993); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (1992); Sakshi Art Gallery, Chennai and Bangalore (1991); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (1988); Sakshi Art Gallery, Chennai and Bangalore(1987); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (1985); Gallery Unverzagt, Germany (1985); Gallery K, Geneva, Bonn, New Delhi (1985); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai(1983); Dhoomimal Gallery, New Delhi (1981); Gallery Surya, Germany (1976); Serisawa Gallery, Los Angeles (1972); Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai (1972)

Selected Group Exhibitions

Spring, The Noble Sage, London (2008); In the Fore, The Noble Sage, London (2007); Modern & Contemporary Indian Paintings, Bid & Hammer Auctioneers, Bangalore (2008); Gallery Sumukha Art Fair, Hong Kong (2004); Concern India Auction; WISE Christies Auction, Mumbai (1999); Windows, NAB Sothebys Auction, London (1998); Art for Save the Children, Sothebys Auction, Mumbai (1995); Art for CRY, Jehangir Art Gallery, New Delhi (1995); 8 Contemporary Artists JOY & DESPAIR, Joshua Gallery, Singapore (1991); IV Triennale India, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi (1978)

Selected Awards

Maharashtra State Award (1978); Lalit Kala Akademi Award (1977)

Three years ago Rekha Rao left her studio in Mumbai to re-energise herself in new southern surroundings. Her new home, Bangalore, has inspired in her exuberant colour and new inventive, semi-narrative mark-making. In her recent paintings, descriptive and sparingly dispersed brushstrokes subtly outline and draw in the colour into the categories of meaning and symbolism for the viewer whilst at the same time disappearing to allow enjoyment of the very pigment itself and the careful placement of colour next to colour on the canvas. Self-expression is certainly of crucial importance to the artist, something she no doubt learnt from her father -celebrated artist, K.K. Hebbar. She remembers well the lessons her father bestowed upon her. She was always taught to see the world as artistic potential awaiting expression. Today, she differs from her father in the economy of meaning she gives to the viewer in her paintings. Whereas Hebbar often led you into a work by his artist hand, Rekha Rao lets you make sense of the journey for yourself. In her elimination of all that is unessential to her painterly projection of real life, she becomes an apparition appearing and disappearing in the broad brushstrokes; her authorial voice obscured and then suddenly clear. We make sense of her artful paintings by the colourful shadow she leaves behind her as she escapes from the work.

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