Vipul is a multi-award-winning artist whose work is housed in private collections and institutions across the world – from France, the UK and Italy, to Singapore and Hong-Kong.
His broad international appeal contrasts starkly with his long-standing intense focus on his subject – the Veraval shipyard in Gujarat.
‘I have been visiting Veraval for many years. In itself, I find it a rich canvas of life. A vital place - the constant activity, intense smells, and noises of the shipyard never fail to enliven every sense. More than this, over time I have developed a strong connection with its people - their lives, traditions, skills, the work they do and how they do it are an inspiration to me,’ says Vipul.
This influence is clear in his shipyard works (shown here), each expressing a scene in rich detail.
Although Vipul uses a variety of media in his works, a distinguishing characteristic is the scale and intricacy he creates with the simplicity of pencil.
He attended the Sheth C. N. College of Fine Arts, and lives and works in Ahmedabad.
The over matter series
These three large-scale (4 x 4 feet) pencil drawings are from Vipul's Over Matter series. Each surrealist scene has its origin in intrinsic needs or desires, and the consequent mental dilemma between a dream and its manifestation.
In Leave/Live Vipul’s focus is on the confusion existing between desire and reality. ‘It’s the constant internal dialogue which urges breaking free, while thoughts of reality simultaneously pull us back. The battle is intense, unrelenting. But the choice itself is a simple one – acceptance or change,’ he says.
Will, Vipul explains, 'is about the cycle of dreaming - anticipation, curiousity and, once realised, the sharp focus this brings to our pre-existing realtiy.'
Mother of Invention, inspired by a time when Vipul himself could not eat due to a minor illness, is a surrealistic take on the basic state of hunger. The dreaming labourer is wrapped in a roti (basic Indian bread), while a dog also dreams of being able to feed her offspring. ‘It’s curious to me how the mind takes over in times of fundamental physical need. The almost hallucinogenic qualities evoked from being without, the inability for even the subconscious to move away…when for a joyful but imaginary moment, the need is resolved.’