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Gurcharan Singh

The dark side of life as embodied by prostitutes and pimps slinking through the sleazy alleyways of crowded cities is what moves Gurcharan Singh to take up his paintbrush. Outcasts, the wretchedly poor living on the fringes of society and feeding on it and being fed on it in turn, form the basis of Singh's works. Walking down the less savory areas of cities, Gurcharan transferred his observations onto the canvas bringing to life people who are seldom thought of by their more fortunate brethren. 

Back in the studio, Gurcharan would attack the canvas savagely to paint hundreds of characters culled from his night's experiences. The hard-as-nails whore, no longer a victim, the licentious men and a host of others would emerge to create a panorama of people that was colorful, vibrant, lusty with life. Painted in garish reds and blues the faces of the humans, especially those of the women are wonderfully expressive conveying a range of emotions that is deeply moving. 

As he grew with experience, Singh's work began to take on a more mature hue. No longer a simple chronicler, he started exploring the relationships between the various elements that make up this world. Most noteworthy is his practice of juxtaposing animals with prostitutes, a recurrent theme that dominates his paintings. Using them as symbols to expose the primitive in humans, Gurcharan Singh set out to explore the links between animal and human nature. Primarily, though, his subjects always remained the underprivileged and exploited women living on the fringes of society. 

Reflective and sad, almost all of his work is casual and unplanned and he explains, "... I don't get too much time to paint and they (his paintings) are also small." He is currently working at animation at the Films Division on a film on Nehru.