Thursday, June 23, 2011

Creating masterpieces with discarded stones

For most of us stones lying by the road side appears like an eyesore and an unwanted distraction, but for this 31-year-old artist it appears like resourceful objects for his artwork. Making use of these odd shaped stones lying by the roadside, he creates wonderful pieces of art.

AR Manjunath is the artiste who creates sculptures out of stones collected from footpaths and road side curbs. He has created a unique collection of around 35 sculptures, all chiselled and carved and out of pieces of granite, discarded on the roadside.

Manjunath who has done MFA in Scultpure and BFA in Painting, both from the Chamarajendra Academy of Visual Arts (CAVA) Mysore, has exhibited his artworks several times at Chitrakala Parishat, Bangalore and also at National Sculpture camp
2010 held at Kannada University, Hampi. He has bagged this year's Karnataka Shilpakala Academy State Award, which will be presented to him on May 31 at Ravindra Kalakshetra.

Hailing from Bilikere, Manjunath while commuting daily to Mysore for his studies began collecting various types of stones, especially the granite stones that were chipped off while making stone slabs for construction works. Working on the collection, he began creating his artworks.

Speaking to Express, he said that `There are many stones of varying hues and shapes occurring naturally and I have made use of such multi-colour, especially two colour stones, for most of my artworks.'

'The stones available in the market are quite expensive and I not go in search of stone blocks for my artworks, instead I make use of only those which are available in nature in plenty. I practiced carving on stones lying on roadside and those used for building constructions.'

`I want to continue with my sculpting and carving and eventually open a full-fledged art studio to train artists in making sculptures,' says Manjunath who conducts Art classes for children during summer vacation by teaching them about clay modeling, painting and drawing.

While inviting more number of students to come forward and enroll for such sculpture courses, he adds, `Most youngsters of today don't like this, because creating a single sculpture requires patience, hard work and lot of time.'

Knife becomes a paint brush for this artist

A new form of painting by artist Satyanarayana

The first thought to cross the mind the moment the word ‘Knife’ is uttered is that
it is dangerous, used only to cut something or wound a person. But Satyanaraya saw it differently. He saw that a knife can also be used like a paint brush to paint on a canvas.

Satyanarayana, a painter based in Vidyaranyapuram, Mysore, is the talented artist
who can create dexterous painting using a knife. With his unique style of painting using knife, he is able to bring out paintings that appear quite life-like and indiscernible that it was painted without using a brush.

Though the main theme of his paintings is centered on tradition and culture, he has
in a way broken the traditional way of doing paintings which everybody is familiar with, namely using a paint brush. He uses a knife like steel blade fixed to a wooden handle and uses it to paint the drawings.

It was circumstances that forced Satyanaraya to become an artist. Born on 4th Oct,
1959, he lost his father when he was quite young, forcing him to shoulder the responsibilities of the family. He took up a full-time job at Ratnam Arts
in the city when he was in 5th std. While he was working there, he came in contact with several senior artists from CAVA and other institutions who visited the place. They advised him to learn painting in a professional way.

When he was 14-years-old, Satyanaraya shifted to Bangalore and joined an
advertisement company, CM Ram Arts. Working as an assistant to senior artists of that period like Ramchandran, Narasimhan, CV Ambaji and others. Later he learned
to make cinema banners and cut-outs. It was they who introduced him to knife work.
He also worked at Mumbai, Kerala and Chennai before returning to Mysore in 2000.

While on a job at Mumbai, he learnt the sketch work on banners along with drawing
abstract paintings. He has worked for several huge cut outs of late thespian Kannada matinee idol Dr Rajkumar, prominent among them is the 115 ft tall cut-out he made for the movie Bhaktaprahalada under the guidance of his seniors.

Practicing relentlessly for 17 hours a day, from 5am in the morning to 10 pm in the
night, he obtained perfect mastery over his strokes. In the recent years, he mastered digital photography and also photographing models.

In spite of the inherent difficulties to paint using a knife, Satyanarayana still
preferred to work in this medium. Paintings done using knife requires more time to dry and the colour rendering also varies. In fact one can feel the strokes and curves by touching it. Compared to a paint-brush, works created out of
knife is difficult and needs special techniques and Satyanarayan mastered them very quickly.

Though he faced several hardships while working as an assistant making cinema
banners, Satyarnaraya is that rare artist who belongs to the group of world class painters who were non academic artisans, but attributed their achievement to sheer dedication and continuous learning.

He has exhibited his works in several art shows held in Bangalore and also conducted
classes and demos for students. During one such exhibition held in city in 2002, he introduced a new art form called digital art.

In a recently held expo he exhibited several paintings of temples and the life of
people living villages depicting their daily chores. Satyanarayan is equally good in painting life portraits and it appears like a photograph taken from the camera. Apart from this, he has also painted portraits of poets which now adorn the walls of Kalamandira, while an 8-ft portrait of Swami Vivekananda he did in 1991 can be seen at Sadvidya Patashala.

He selected this medium to created painting is because its impossible to replicate
them and work can't be reproduced in any other medium by others. Even the same artists cannot create the replica of his painting again.

Sometimes he also paints using a combination of brush and knife, with just 30% brush
work and the remaining using knife. He takes around two days to complete one painting.

`The patterns obtained using a knife are quite different from that using a paint
brush. With brush it is easy to obtain a very smooth and soft finish. It's not the same with knife. Also such strokes cannot be done using computer and software. They are always unique,' says Satyanarayan.

I am happy and have totally involved in the art and want to come out with good
abstract paintings with a modern touch. Even when I die, I will be alive through my paintings, he adds.

Pillars of the overhead water tank inside Zoo develops cracks: Poses safety issues

Zoo needs around 5 to 5.5 lakh litres of water every dayExpress

In century-old Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens in Mysore cracks have appeared on the pillars of the overhead tank which was constructed wayback in 1978. The tank having a storage capacity of 1.5 lakh litres of water is situated close to a Nursery and is posing threat in case it crashes.

The tank appears to be in a dilapidated condition and according to zoo sources not much water is stored in the tank. Chunks of concrete have fallen off from underneath the tank exposing rusted iron rods. The concerned authorities should take appropriate measures immediately before any mishap occurs.

Within the Zoo premises there are four over head water tanks and one sump. While the storage capacity of three water tanks is 1 lakh litres, the one near the nursery which has developed cracks is 1.5 lakh litres. The sump has a capacity to store 2 lakh litres. The water tank near the enclosure housing the Hippopotamus was build in 2006 while the other two water tanks were constructed in 1985.

About water facility

The Zoo needs around 5 to 5.5 lakh litres of water every day, out of which MCC supplies about 2 lakh litres. About 1 lakh liter is preserved in case of any emergency.

The major portion of water stored in these tanks comes from borewells already dug within the zoo premises. There are six borewells, one of 10 HP capacity; four of 7.5 HP and the remaining one of 5 HP. Supply of water from these borewells is quite sufficent to meet the daily requirements of the zoo's.

Speaking to Express, Zoo Deputy Director NT Vijayakumar said, `within two month tenders will be called and the present tank will be demolished,' while a new tank with the same storgage capacity will be built.'

Zoo Engineer Muralidhar said that `Till the construction of new water tank is taken up, we have to depend on the existing water tank for storage. There is no immediate threat of it collapsing and can be managed for some more time. Plans are there to have another water sump with a storage capacity of 2 lakh litres.'

Audio Guide tour for visitors to Mysore Zoo fails to take-off

Only 374 Audio Guide coupons were sold since it launch of two months ago; Tourists complain its expensive
Introduced for the first time with the intention of providing details and interesting tidbits to tourists visiting Sri Chamarajendra Zoological Gardens, about the various animals and birds housed in cages, an Audio Guide was launched on April 22 with much fanfare.

The technology provided by a company named Boltell offers pre-recorded commentaries both in Kannada and English to visitors opting for this virtual guided tour after payment of a fee. But only complaints are being heard from visitors who opted to avail this Audio Guide facility.

Though 8,50,759 tourists have visited zoo between April and June 19, 2011 only 374 visitors (less than 0.5%) have purchased coupons for the Audio Guide. Of the 374 coupons that were sold, only 3 were coupons of Rs 20 and the remaining for Rs 10.

First a visitor has to purchase the Coupon by paying Rs 10 for 30 minutes and Rs 20 for one hour. The services should be used within six hours of activation.

Later they should dial the landline number provided in the coupon to get connection to the audio Guide and should enter the coupon code given overleaf. When it is promoted, visitors should enter the enclosure ID of which animal or bird they need by the ID number provided in front of the particular enclosure and listen to a commentary which gives details of that particular animal.

But the catch is that the tourist has to pay for the call-charges as applicable for calling a landline number which will be deducted from his account. Though the call charges differ from one service provider to another, sometimes it can be as expensive as Rs 1 per minute. Additional charges are also deducted from their account as it is a Valued Added Service by the service provider.

Most tourists who purchase the coupons are not aware of the incurring call costs and are shocked after using the facility. They hope that they can get complete information from purchasing the coupon, but they express shock when the amount gets deducted from their account.

Lack of proper information is not provided to the tourists at the time of purchasing the coupons is the main reason. Poor people find difficult to bear the ticket charge itself which is Rs 40 for elders and Rs 20 for children. Apart from this when they got connection without the knowledge of it, it bears them extra. If they get connection of Rs 20 coupon the cost will be around Rs 50 to Rs 60.

While audio recordings of some animals lasts upto 15 minutes most of them are of 10 minutes duration. But when one purchases a coupon of Rs 10 he can listen to information lasting only for 30 minutes, which will be exhausted by the time he listens to atmost 3 or 4 animals. If he wants to know about other animals he has to purchase another coupon.

Many were of the opinion that getting information on the internet was quite cheaper than spending so much money for mobile calls.

Speaking to Express, Rohini from Bangalore said that `without being aware of call charges I activated Audio Guide and lost around Rs 29. The officials should provide correct information for the tourists before selling the coupons.'

`The Audio Guide facility provides knowledge about various animals at Zoo, but the charges are very expensive and are not affordable by the common man interested to know more about the Zoo. Instead of Audio Guide if Zoo authorities made arrangements to provide a running commentary near every enclosure, it will be quite cheaper and more helpful,' says visitor Nasim, an Enginnering Student from Delhi.

`By purchasing a coupon for Rs 10, it was possible for me to hear only of 2 animals and the line got disconnected after some time. My bill got deducted for Rs 27. Its definitely not people-friendly,' says Dhanajay Sheikh a tourist.

------------- Box --------------

Number of Visitors
April, 2011 - 2,89,324
May, 2011 - 4,37,159
June 19, 2011 - 1,24,276

Number of activation of audio guide:
In April 45 numbers
In May 252 numbers
In June 77 numbers
In which only 3 cards of Rs 20 has been sold so far.

Veteran athlete ASI Subbanna to represent India in USA

Usually we come across police Personnel who run behind from from fitness. But here is a 58 year old, Assistant Sub-Inspector who has carved a niche in the police department.

Subba Shetty famously known as Subbanna in Police department is a veteran athlete who has represented India in various
inter-national levels and has carved a niche.

He has also represented India in various International athletics meets held at South Korea in 1996, India 2000,
Malaysia in 2010 and he is one among eight members who has been selected to take part in World Master Athletic
Championships, Sacramento, USA which be held from July 5 to 17.

He has brought laurels to the State by participating in various State, national and international level competitions
and has bagged many medals. He completes 5 kms and 10 kms walking in 30.31 second and 58 minutes respectively.

Hailing from Kalale, Subbanna obtained his education upto 4th standard in Kalale and later settled in Mysore,
following a infection in legs for which he went underwent treatment for 5 years in Mysore.

He is the 8th son among nine children to his parents Madashetty and Madamma, who's occupation was extracting the oil
from seeds. He completed his SSLC in 1970-71 and discontinued his studies due to family problems. Later he obtained
job from a commission agent of weighing food grains in a market.

With keen interest in typing, he joined at SNS typing institute and during the institution's annual sports meet he
took part in the running race in bare foot from Mysore to Kadakola and among 25 members he stood in second place.
Inspired over this, he later started participating in all the running race events conducted by various organisation
across the city.

Speaking to Express he said `many of the police personnel were attending the running race and they suggested me to
join for police department and I attained the interview and obtained job in 1976.'

`I used to compete in 5 km and 10 km running race with bare foot and I have stood always in first three places from
1977 to 1994,' says Subbanna with proud.

`In 1994, once I attended the veterans athletics championship and observed the walking style and practiced that. I
felt from running, walking is easy and then continued taking part in the athletics. From 1996 to 2011 I have practiced
2,18,000 kms of walks', says Subbanna.

Later, in 1996 Mysore National Veteran Athletics he has obtained silver medal and qualified for International South
Korea Championship and from then without break he is keep on competing in all the championships.

He thanks Veteran District Masters Athletics Association, Mysore and department officials for supporting him and says
secret of his stamina is determination.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

This Iranian wants to translate his books into Kannada

Dariush GHasemian Dastjerdi (Dara) from Iran is in city to obtain his Ph.D degree. Being a designer, architect and writer (08/02/1961), he has penned his 6th book Standard Humanism and Worldwide Standard Human Society which is based on peace and respect. Express had a candid tete-a-tete with Dara and here are the excerpts:

Reason for writing book about humanity
About 70 percent of the people of the world according to Standard Humanism are honest and pure and under the oppression of about 10 percent, the ten percent usually try to make human life full of hostility to make 70 percent positive ones sad with a destroyed life. By humanism it is possible to keep our religions and cultures and to be united and hence penned the novel Standard Humanism.

Why you are distributing the book freely
Because I want to introduce a pure feeling of mine for mankind out of any thinking regarding profit and the rate of sale.

Source for writing the book
I have written the book in Farsi language after the result of 27 years of searching for best humanity and life based on truth which collected by all the people of the world and beliefs. In future I would like to translate the book in English and other languages and first it will be in Kannada.

Why in Kannada first
Because I started writing the book on Standard Humanism in Mysore, and to appreciate and to gift the idea for Mysoreans I write it first in Kannada and more over I love the people here.

Why you need to translate the books
My idea is to change the primitive world by an advanced one by the means of respect to all the nations and beliefs and through an international organization with administering all the aspects and facts of human life, They are: politics, beliefs, cultures, economics and sciences.

Your message of Humanism
The message of Standard Humanism to India and mankind is try to be best of yourself, your nationality, your culture, your religions and beliefs, because when we try to be best we will try to study about all things and understand our failures, and as we are seeking to be best we will correct our things and eventually these would lead to better world with respect to others and finally peace. There is a lot to say I hope very soon I translate the book and you will see more of Standard Humanism.

In What you want to pursue PhD.
The advanced and perfect management of human life in third millennium .

Your motto of the life
To spread the message of peace and humanity and to attract human views towards the superior goal of peace and human unity in the opposition of negative 10 percent ignorant and oppressors.

Interested readers for book can contact Dara on his e-mail id:

Airshow on miniature aircraft in city on June 19

For first of its kind, Mysore students are showcasing their talent on Aeromodelling and have organised airshow on miniature aircraft in city on June 19 at Mahajana College grounds between 10 am to 12 noon. On the occasion 35 students will exhibit their designing miniature modeled aircrafts and show how to fly them.

An Air show is being organized as the concluding part of the training programme and students will demonstrate their recently acquired skills in designing and flying miniature plane models. Both non-powered, uncontrolled, free-floating gliders as well as multi-engine, fueled, radio controlled air crafts having wingspans of six feet and more will be flown during the Air show.

The first ever Aeromodelling classes for the youth of Mysore was organized by Rotary Mysore in association with the International Academy of Mountaineering and Allied Sports (IAMAS). Now, the first batch of students who have successfully completed their classes are showcasing their talent.

First the students were thought about the basic parts of an aero plane and their functions, later they were familiarized with the different tools that were used in aeromodelling. At present the students are working on control line models and free flying models. They will build a Radio Controlled model in the final phase of the project.

During the last 7 months of its training programme, students have built various kinds of miniature air crafts under the able guidance of MMP Kumar, a retired NCC Associate Officer.

Aerodreamz was a program of a rare kind, introduced for the first time in Mysore with coordination from Ananya Balasubramanya and K Shreyas of IAMAS. The idea behind initiating the project was to introduce and popularize Aeromodelling among the city's youngsters. Rotary Mysore funded for the project. Aerodreamz was backed by IAMAS President K G Venkataraman.

Aeromodelling is the `King of All Hobbies', says Kumar, the course instructor, as it is not only fun oriented but demands a lot of concentration and patience.

`There is nothing more exciting than building my own mini aircraft and seeing it fly high. I don't get disappointed when it crashes because it's a challenge for me to rebuild and make it fly higher. It is a hobby that tickles the mind and develops creativity,' says Student Ashok.

He further adds `Even the simple of the simplest models have to be worked upon properly keeping in mind the basic principles of Aeromodelling. The real essence of Aeromodelling can be understood only when one rebuilds a plane that's crash landed, make it fly again as before by making suitable modifications in the model.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Dalvoy Educational Institution has 123 years of History

The Dalvoy Educational Institution famously known as Dalvoy School, located behind
the Mysore City Corporation is one of the city's oldest educational institutions having completed 123 years.

The institution was started in the year 1888 by late Krishna Rao, a renowned teacher
of those times to provide education to the children of Dalvoys who were working as Sepoys for the Maharaja of Mysore. Hence it obtained the name `Dalvoy School.'

Earlier, Krishna Rao used to teach children, especially those hailing from poor
families and special children under a peepal tree in Devirammani Agrahara. As years passed by, the strength of the students increased later he shifted to Bommaiah Choultry.

Realizing the need for a well constructed building, Krishna Rao and few other
samaritans approached King Chamaraja Wodeyar IX (23rd ruler beginning from Yaduaraya), the then Maharaja of Mysore, for Help.

Later, he donated the land for the construct a school. Soon several philanthropists
of those times such as Ragi Mandi Chowdaiah, Veerabhada Modaliyar, Chinnaswamy Modaliyar, Dhamaratnakara Nandibasappa and several prominent merchants from Santhepet donated for the construction of the school's building.

As more number of students, especially from rural areas began to enroll, the
Primary, Lower Middle and Upper Middle schools were added and in the year 1946, High School was started. It secured State level ranks in the today's equivalent of SSLC examinations held during those times. Students studying here have won awards not only at the
National level sports meets, but also in events organized by the NCC, Scouts and NSS.

Many prominent persons like Scientist Dr Raja Ramanna, noted film actor MP Shankar,
SN Venkat Rao, in-charge of Konkan Railway and an advisory for Bangalore metro, Dr
Nagaraj well-known surgeon in Bangalore, Karnataka Exhibition Authority Chairman Raghu, and many others have studied in this school.

Till 1950 in entire Mysore City Marimallappa, Dalvoy and Hardwick school were
considered as prominent schools and Mysore city was considered as the Center of State and was very much famous for education.

Speaking to Express Teacher Pankaj who is serving from past 26 years in this school
said that `This is aided school at present the building is in dilapidated condition and the management doesn't has sufficient financial potential to bear the expenses. If some public or if the government takes initiative under JNNURM a heritage building can be rejuvenated
and retained for long time.

Multifaceted artist: This man become artist, when he bags prize in drawing contest !

Here is an artist who got interest in painting when he won prize in high school
Level. ML Somavarada is the artist. Hailing from Mandya, he was not interested in painting. But when he bagged first prize in painting contest, he got keen interest and started drawing paintings and opted it as a carrier.

His participation for painting contest was also accident. Sharing his memories with
Express he said that `out of curiosity one-day I accompanied my friends for district level painting contest held in Mandya. But once inside the room, the organizers announced that only those who are participating in the contest should remain and others should

`I got upset over this that I may have to leave the room, I decided to stay back and
with great effort I did a painting. Leaving the painting there I came out to watch the sugar factory nearby. A few moments had gone by when my friend came running towards me in great excitement and said, "Soma, your painting of Bhima and Dhuryodhana's wrestling
has won the first prize ! I was dumbstruck. This became the motivation for
painting," said Somavarada.

He is very much talented in various subjects like art, literature, science,
traveling and photography and is always touring all over the State popularizing art works. He has also illustrated over page design for many books and is also
good in interior and stage design. His modern art paintings drawn using basic shapes
and portraits drew everyone's attention. He is equally good in calligraphy design, letter design, modern, tradition and folk art.

ML Somavarada has did his BFA from KSOU and got tutored from the famous artist RM
Hadapada in his Ken Art School. His paintings have been exhibited at Kalamela, Kalajaatre,Mysore Dasara, Chitra Santhe, Bahuoopi, Pancharangu, Odanadi and
in various visual media channels dedicated for art.

He is also a Sub-Editor of a paper named 'Chandrike' and is one of the founder
member of an innovative group called 'Sobagu'. His 'Amurtha Art Centre' has become a bee hive of activity for various kinds of cultural activities. With active participation of noted humorist HL Keshavamurthy and environmentalist Nagesh Hegde, the Centre today has
become a meeting place for young artistes.

"All this I did because of my deep interest to study art intensely, because I did
not learn painting in the traditional way, rather my own life's experiences becoming my lessons. Everything that comes within the purview of our sight and experience can be transformed into art.”

`I do want any publicity and I am not so much interested exhibiting my talents. I
just want to impart my skill to many artist and the art filed should become ever ending,' he adds.

``The commercial art form such as advertisement can be compared to explicit form of
art, in contrast with the implicit (Amurtha) art form. Accordingly all bill-boards, banners and posters become means of earning money, which cannot be
said as artforms," and adds, "It is possible to bring out our feelings in a true
work of art.

“The scope and depth of its meaning is indeed quite vast, but can be interpreted
only according to one's own understanding of life. This also gives immense joy to the artiste and in fact there are several artistes amongst us who have made great names by bringing out best artistic talents,” he adds.

This artist creates painting using knife

There is no limit to finding innovative ways to express ones talent especially if he
is a talented artist like Satyanarayana. His unique style of painting using Knife as a painting tool instead of a brush, has bought out such real life like paintings.

Though the main theme of his paintings is concentrated on tradition and culture, he
has in a way broken the traditional way of doing paintings which everyone are familiar with, namely using a paint brush.

He instead uses a knife like steel blade fixed to a wooden handle and uses it to
paint the drawings. Sometimes he also uses a combination of brush (20 %) and the rest with knife.

Basically Satyanarayan is not an artist. He lost his father in his childhood and
due to circumstances and family responsibility he discontinued his studies and joined near artist as helper and later at the age of 14 he shifted to

There he worked as an assistant to senior artists who create cinema banners and
cut-outs. When he went to Bombay to place a banner he learnt the stetch work and started concentrating on abstract paintings. He has worked for the many huge cut outs of Rajkumar and main among them is 115 feet tall cut-out of the movie

Later with the help of his senior artists like Ramachandran and CV Ambari he learnt
art work and practiced it from daily from morning 5 am to 10 pm and obtained perfection in his strokes. Now, artist Sathyanarayan is equally good in
digital photography and modeling photographies.

Speaking to Express 52-year-old Satyanarayan said that `as its difficult to
reproduce painting made out of knife, I
prefer this medium. Even the works created by me cant be reproduced again,' he adds.

`The paintings created using knife needs lot of time to dry and the colour
dimensions also varies. One can feel the strokes and curves by touching it.
If compared to brush the work created out of knife is difficult and needs
techniques,' he adds.

`Learning is a never ending process. Most of the world class painters are also non
academic artist their achievement and dedication have taken them to great extent.'

`I have faced many hardship while working as assistant for making banners. Now, I am
happy and have totally involved in the art and want to come out with good abstract paintings with a modern touch. Even when I die, I will be alive through my paintings, he adds.

One can have a glimpse of his paintings exhibited at Mysore Art Gallery in Ramanuja
Road, beween 11 am and 7pm till June 5. For details contact Satyanarayan on Mob: 9480477044. He is residing in Vidyaranyapuram.