New Delhi India: This set of drawings and watercolours called “Drawing Days in Delhi” were created after a trip to New Delhi in 2007 and were the result of a commission.
ARTIST’S THOUGHTS ON DRAWING DAYS IN DELHI
In late 2006 my friend Peter Janssen, who owns many of my paintings suggested I go to India for a week to experience the sights, sounds and scents of such a fascinating culture. The idea was to then feel inspired and produce a painting which he could give as a wedding present to Indian friends of his who were being married in March in New Delhi.I booked a plane ticket and went to Singapore for three days and then New Delhi for five. I stayed in The Hans Plaza Hotel near Connaught Place and headed off to see the sights of New Delhi in a taxi with a friendly and helpful driver.
At the start I thought I would produce one painting which would reflect my stay. After the first day it became very apparent to me that there was no way that a single painting could encapsulate this fascinating and intriguing place. So I decided to do a series of paintings with a view to collecting them as a portfolio of pictures. Each day I used a travel guide book and asked my driver to take me to each site I’d picked from the book. It would have been impossible for me to do it any other way. I forget the sequence now but remember taking hundreds of photographs with my digital camera. Each night I would retire to the hotel and download all the pictures onto my laptop computer. The hotel had wifi so I felt in contact with friends and family back in Australia.
There is no doubting that the experience was a culture shock. However it was fascinating. The weather was marvelous – cool and fine.On one day a hire car took me to Agra to see the Taj Mahal. That was very special – in more ways than one. I still remember looking out of the car window at dusk on the way back to New Delhi and seeing all the roadside restaurants or café’s setting up for their evening trade. It seems an ethereal experience in retrospect. The grass was green and the smell stayed with me for ages.
The last day or so I felt like a normal tourist. I went to Connaught Place and looked in the bookshops and went for rides in Tuk Tuks. The green and yellow type. I remember going into a men’s tailor shop and looking at the Indian suits with the silver/gold braiding.It’s possible to ramble on and on about what I did but that might spoil my pictures. After all – that’s why I draw. A picture is worth a thousand words!I began work on my series immediately I arrived back in Sydney and completed 17 pictures which are what you are now viewing. Hopefully each work reflects a different mood and feel.
I don’t have a favorite picture in the series.
It seems funny writing this little explanation back in Sydney sitting at my computer and listening to some familiar music. Anyway I really hope you like these pictures and assure you they were done with sincerity. They are how I felt about my seven days in New Delhi.
I sometimes wonder how they will look in fifty years.
Sydney October 2007