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Kambala Mangalore India

Project Kambala

Welcome to the Project Kambala Mini Site that charts the development and journey of the largest and most complex work of Dynamic Realism to date via text, documentary, artist interviews, photography and HD film.

The Journey section documents the trip to India to gather material for this painting and is a co-written documentary.

The canvas section is a commentary of the creation of the painting itself, the challenges and discoveries faced during the creative process.

Introduction - From Idea To Form

Back in 2004 I watched Michael Palin's 'Himalaya' on the BBC as he attended a bull race in the first episode. The bulls raced on dry land, a pair, yoked together travelled down a 600 yard course with huge dust plumes behind their driver who stood upon a small platform. This is what started the inspiration for capturing such a spectacle.

Since early 2011 I have been involved as an Art Advisor to The East India Company in London. My work with them included research into 'Company Paintings' – these are paintings that depict life in India including scenes of Indian people, dancers and festivals. The style of painting blended traditional elements from Rajput and Mughal painting with a more Western treatment of perspective, volume and recession. They were produced for European Patrons, particularly Patrons from The British East India Company in the 18th and 19th Centuries.

As Dynamic Realism becomes more evolved I am careful to chose images that promote its attributes as far as possible. Always intent on finding inspiration from history, cultural and ecological subjects I decided to capture an Indian Kambala race using Dynamic Realism thereby twinning Eastern subject matter with (Western) Dynamic Realist style to create a large scale painting. Such a painting is not only reflective of 'Company Paintings' but also paintings produced by Western Artists capturing Asian subjects using western painting techniques like George Chinnery and Johan Zoffany.

Between 2004 and 2011 I had encountered a number of images and film of 'Kambala' the water buffalo equivalent of the race shown in ' Himalaya', this time in shallow water in southern India. The effect of racing through the water was incredible, and something that deserved to be captured large scale.

I hope you enjoy our journey in India to gather material for this painting and the journey of the production of the painting over the next months by clicking on the links below.


Click here for The Journey In India

Click here for The Painting in Progress

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