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RIGHT INSTINCTS

The plastic arts are likely to thrive when practiced by people with enthusiasm in the problems of their art, and comparatively small interest in its contents. The artist must not wish to do this thing or that because it is a laudable subject, but because it is an excellent one for his tool. In this way, a subject lends itself well for chisel or brush. Doing this an artist will do something the content of which, whether it be emotion, or thought, or both, will have that spontaneity, that unconsciousness which makes us feel that he has really interpreted our age to ourselves. In other words art is successful when it is in touch with the tender most, if invisible, points in life – the unconscious as well as the semi-conscious.
What I say above, if true, is applicable to the self of the sculptor Parminder Singh. Going over a variety of his old and new works, it seems to me that his simple, rural background has been an advantage to him. His imagination is rooted in the actual soil and where things silently germinate, grow slowly, organically, rather than as in cities, by force feeding;. There appears much potential in his talent. The best of his images are pure forms of expressive surfaces. Artistic ‘magic’ and its metamorphosis, all this play a vital role in them.
Also, he shows several fresh solutions to old craft problems. Like all serious artists he realizes that his material dictates the forms of his creations. Different stones make different demands. There is a concentrated quality in some of his black stone works. Also, his white marbles can have a rare delight. A work in black stone continues in the great Indian tradition of relief and carving with aplomb. The artist instinctively leaves parts of the work uneven. Thus comes beauty. The passage of time is writ large on it, as on the great stones of Ellora. Those stones were dreams that can still be believed, and so is this excellent piece by Parminder.
Being moved by the said stones, I pin great hopes on this sculptor. If he learns his lessons from the art of our earlier culture, understands its moving spirit, he will stir our dulled imaginations to life. Ephemeral installations, clever as they are, cannot stand up to the time-tested, handcrafted stones.

Padmashri Keshav Malik
Eminent Poet & Art Critic
New Delhi (India).