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It has been well said that one of the sure tests of artistic talent is the evidence of not only continuing, but also ever intensified singularity. I believe that I’m not putting myself at risk by opening that Tarannum seems for the moment to foot this bill. Her work, increasingly so, embodies a fine degree of clarity, precision, and sharp, salient detail. I personally rejoice that during the last few years she has by slow but persistent application in the face of adversity, groomed her work—in line with abstraction –to a near flawless visual, clear –sounding music. The handling of the variegated colours is subtle. She steers clear of muddiness and squalor in the oil medium such as is observed in the compositions of many an art contender. The treatment of the overall work is so judicious, the various hues so well blent that our eyes cannot but dote and linger on the grain and texture of the genre.

Obviously, traps have been set up for the viewer’s eye, but those traps are justified, so that we are bemused for some precious moments. The senses are catered to with choice colour-form; nothing being over rich or too heavy to digest. There are, but of course, never any overt references or representations in this sort of work. Instead what we have is a grace period wherein though no common objects are presented from the word, we rediscover out own sensibility lying disused in us. The powers of artistic contemplation are nurtured, the faculty of intution in us activized. Our abject dependence on gross substances and heavy emotions lessening, we receive intimations of purity. Rhythm in the relationship between colours and measures bring out what is essential in our rendezvous with whizzing time and space.

Tarannum’s work, thus, is lucid and free by very nature. Though she does not say it in so many words, her tryst is with beauty –the beauty that comes out of the humble paint oozing from tubes and anointing empty space. Here, then, is no random doodling, a hit or miss creativity, but considered, pondered over, positive abstraction. It is light, in its different incarnations that the work expresses to satisfaction.

Keshav Malik
Art Critic

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