This untitled portrait of two ethnically dressed women engaging in conversation is very much in keeping with Kalal Laxma Goud’s typical subject matter and style of painting. Born in 1940 in Telangana, Andhra Pradesh, the artist began his career under the tutelage of KG Subramanyam in Baroda. Early on in his career, Goud was known for his erotic figures which clearly had a rustic quality to them. He was fascinated by the female form and felt more inclined to draw women from his village. This is because he believes the taboo of sex is absent in the villages of India, in contrast to urban life.
Here, the women are wearing blouses but their breasts and nipples are outlined giving the image a sexual undertone. One of the women in the composition gazes directly at the viewer with a direct, stern look. Her green coloured, penetrating eyes give her a superiority, making the audience uncomfortable. The colours and patterns on the sarees, along with the motif used in them and the jewellery create a spot-on typology of the rural women of Telangana.
Overall, the composition is largely left uncoloured- the background, the skin of the women except for slight shading on the arms, the inside of the motifs, their jewellery, and even the outlining of the nipples are left blank (white) and lined with black. This is because the artist is tremendously fascinated by the impact of the monochrome. He believed the white, black and greys in between speak volumes.
K. Laxma Goud completed his art education from the Government School of Art and Architecture in Hyderabad and then went on to study Mural Painting and Printmaking at the M.S. University in Baroda. To read more, click here.
TitleUntitled (two women)
ArtistK Laxma Goud
MediumWatercolour on paper
DimensionsH: 21 cm x W: 14.6 cm
Genre: Modern & Contemporary Art