Arjun Das

Arjun Das (b. 1992) is from Giridih, Jharkhand, studied at Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata, where he completed a Bachelor and Master of Fine Arts with a specialization in sculpture (2015, 2017). Arjun lives and works in Kolkata, West Bengal.

In Arjun Das’ artistic practice, he explores the stories of migrant laborers who leave their villages for a better life in the cities. Working in a small restaurant allowed him to closely observe their behavior and sociology. While it was essential for his studies, he had to leave at a crucial point when his Art College demanded more involvement. Migration can stem from natural, political, economic, or socio-cultural reasons, but economic factors drive most people from marginalized communities. Leaving everything behind in search of a livelihood is fueled by dreams, yet he carries an underlying restlessness. The landscapes frozen in window frames and the changing colors inform the essence of his visual journey. Constructing the past through images entangles it with the present, transforming the unpleasant into the pleasant. Revisiting their spaces, he explores the behavior of objects through sculptural processes, intervening in the domains he was once a part of.

Disparate data from spaces like kitchens, washrooms, and markets come together in an irrational juxtaposition, shifting them from their ordinary context to the artistic periphery. He seeks to uncover the sculptural possibilities, portraying recognizable forms with subtle innovations, while technique plays a significant role in his honest approach. As material, he mostly uses found wood in his relief work, collecting used wood from the site and trying to create visuals with archival curving techniques that look like digging in the soil. Sometimes, he uses visual references from Indian cave architecture. Common objects are used in his artwork, and he tries to mock the political power that has oppressed working-class people for centuries.

Title: Untitled

Medium: Re-used wood

Size: 13 Ft

Year: 2023