Professor Santosh Kshirsagar, student of Professor R. K. Joshi and now a faculty member at the Sir J J Institute of Applied Art, Mumbai, India.
In his words….
Information about my background:
I work with ‘Devanagari Script’. ‘Deonagari Script’ can be termed as ‘National Script of India. This script is used for writing five different languages. Namely:
My mother tongue is ‘Marathi Language’ that is written in Devanagari Script. I can also read, write, and speak in Hindi and English Language. I can read and understand up to certain extent Gujarati and Sanskrit. I have learnt new script and designed a Typeface for Oriya Script. But I do not know Oriya language. Altogether, I know four Scripts Devanagari, Gujarati, Oriya and Roman. Being an Indian it is normal to know minimum '3 Languages' and may be 2 or 3 Scripts.
Indian Languages and Scripts:
In India we have 16 official languages that are written in ten different scripts.
I am fascinated by so much variety of Scripts and Languages that exists in India till today. I am extremely impressed by Indian Scripts, Phonetic aspect and its relation to letterform. It is a natural wish to then probe in to studying that as far as possible. After learning basic Calligraphy of Devanagari Script and Roman Script, I started working more in depth - 'the aspect of Calligraphy in Devanagari Script’ and its relation with spoken sound. My postgraduate research was about Tools, Medium and Surface of all the possible Calligraphic Cultures of the World. I did that for one year formally. Everything has started since then. And nothing has ended yet.
I joined as a teacher in college. That was the only place found where I can learn and continue my research for long time on my own. In short, it is still going on from last eighteen years.
Inspiration - Behind my Works:
The very idea of phonetic culture of script has opened all the possibilities for me. Apart from continuing Calligraphy practice, I started writing Poems (not published yet). It has also made me a keen listener of Indian Classical singing. I found many wordless answers are there when we listen to Vocal Music. Similarly, in Calligraphy of phonetic Script which I found it as a quite precise medium of visual expressions.
Calligraphy stands exactly on the center of Verbal and Non-Verbal communication. Calligraphy has a wide spectrum from readable to abstract visuals, yet to be explored in India. In some cases I am conscious about ‘What’ I write and ‘how’ I write. What I feel and how it is expressed. I believe in eastern definition of calligraphy that is “Calligraphy is a picture of Mind”.
What is my Passion:
Share information about Indian Scripts, Calligraphy and learn about other Cultures. That will make me understand more about the great Ancient Indian Philosophy. Commenting about reality around me via medium of ‘Letters’. ‘Letter Consciousness’ is one type of ‘Culture Consciousness’; internationalization demands it more and more day-to-day. Creating awareness about this fact, in my country. Being with new generation to understand importance of ‘Culture Consciousness’. Work for them and work with them, on these issues.
My recently displayed text:
(Comment about printed letters and personalized calligraphy or handwriting aspect, of India today and in its city life, on globalization phase.)
Media (communication Media) covers our outside reality and is documented by Letters. Many of us, in many ways, use letterforms.......but only for communication in so-called language. Individual letter gets value only it forms so-called word of so called language.
Letter in India is a phonetic mark. It stands for specific verbal sound. When we speak our breathing forms a certain combination. When we sing our breathing also formulate some structure.....but.....
When we concentrate on our breathing....we realize our inner reality. I submit myself to letterform activity. And Letter takes its own form.......to define space in their own way.
‘Work of Art’ is a process....isn’t it?
It is definitely not a product like newspaper.
Ideas & Images show - National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai:
• First published for ‘Ideas & Images show’ at National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai.
• Instillation at ‘Ideas & Images’ show at National Gallery of Modern Art, Mumbai.
Process is not just ....about going.........
I go nowhere......... to build my self.
Letter ‘Om’ done by shaving brush.