Inside Outside-Jan 2004
01/01/2004 , By Mridula Sharma
Diwan Manna was recently invited to show his `After the Turmoil’ series at the Paszkowka Palace near Krakow, Poland. Impressed by the artist’s handling of themes such as breakdown of civil society resulting in rape, terrorism and the general unquiet gripping most cultures, Jan Oleksy of the Paszkowka Palace opened his halls to showcase Diwan’s works. Depicting at the same time the breakdown and fusion of life, he generates through his configurations of the known and familiar, an awareness that leaves no alibis for ignoring these issues. An overlap of concerns and an acute understanding of `turmoil’, which he rendered through a part-photographic medium, made it a well acclaimed event among the art lovers of the host country.
Diwan is known for his deft amalgamation of photography, painting and even cinematography in his work (INSIDE OUT-SIDE Oct 2002). Driven by then reality of the injustices that he sees around him, his images portray the cracking up of civil sensibilities. `I am not interested in merely presenting images of the destruction of human goodness, courage and beauty – I try to tap the unsuspected and as yet unrealized sources of tenderness, fortitude and humanity.’
Diwan says he accepts life, including art, as it unfolds with each passing day. `I enjoy the moment and try not to worry about the future. Art for me is something that happens as part of living or being. I never struggle for new images or visuals; they are determined by events, surroundings and my observations of contemporary times.’ Diwan says he does not let technique dominate his work, but makes use of technology wherever and to whatever degree he finds necessary. `I still use film as a medium but do not mind taking the help of the digital process available to use. Developments in technology should be welcomed but only to the extent that they are the tools not the means. The viewer should not be overwhelmed by the technique. It should be the content or subject matter that should be the predominant force in any work of art.’