Sunday Observer Online


Sunday, 20 November 2011





Marriage Proposals
Government Gazette

Semage to showcase artistic talents in Italy

Kalasuri Jayasiri Semage had to cover the aggressively sexy breasts of the beauties he created before escorting them to Oman in keeping with the moral standards of Middle-East. He volunteered to cover the shame of Picasso's nudes to go with the local norms of cultured display of sensual feelings.

Kalasuri Jayasiri Semage

This time he is going to tally Italy! Will he be fortunate to enjoy all freedom to show every curve, exciting rhythms of movement (frozen of course, yet almost ginger or even Wasabi, as he has just returned from Japan!), enticing glances and suggestive gestures of village damsels he is taking to Italy?

Italy is, undoubtedly, the most fertile ground for arts. No one focussing on the development of Western art could afford to ignore the contributions made by Italy. From the days of Etruscan art Italy has been central for Western art, especially during the Renaissance.

Even in the modern period, Italy has been cradle for many new trends in art, including Futurism, Metaphysicalism, Novecento Italiano, Spatialism, Arte Povera and Transavantgarde being a few to mention.

And who can forget the world famous Italian artists such as Michelangelo, Donatello, Raphael and Leonardo da Vinci?

They were afforded freedom, encouragement and recognition in their motherland so their contributions could become priceless achievements to the world of aesthetics. Italy is known for its art galleries and museums frequented by art lovers from all over the world. So, perhaps it is not only a wish fulfilment but a deserving honour for Sri Lanka's maestro artist Kalasuri Dr. Jayasiri Semage to have his creations showcased in a gallery in Italy.

He is, therefore, busy these days giving final touches to the specially created paintings that he plans to take with him. On December 2 he will arrive in Italy to launch his solo exhibition at a prestigious gallery in Padova.


One of the paintings

Jayasiri Semage is no stranger to international galleries. His recent experience with Japanese art lovers had been a big success. He showcased his recent experimental liyawela based line drawings in Japan and had very encouraging responses. Their Zen background, perhaps, prompted Japanese to grasp the monochrome rhythmic flow of almost dancing curved lines along with simple hues of black.

They were very happy with the opportunity provided to purchase a selection from those novel creations. Moreover, Semage's art was highly acclaimed in Switzerland and Sweden too.

Having had many global opportunities of sharing his talents Semage provided an opportunity to his village folks to congratulate him last September, holding a solo exhibition at his alma mater, Ambalangoda Dharmashoka Vidyalaya.

His next international event is already scheduled. "This time, I have to cater to an encouragingly different group of viewers.

They come from a romantic, classical, yet revolutionarily innovative background. Having a very rich cultural past, I am sure; they deserve something more than what I have already given to the rest of the world.

I know their taste is different from that of Sri Lankans, or even those of Middle East, who are conditioned by eastern aesthetic traditions. So, absorbing myself in deep aesthetic 'meditation', I have revolutionised my own style and approach, with Italy in focus, adding a bit of modernity and abstractness to my technique.

One might even find them elusive and elliptical. I have morphed my style even to the extent that someone might find it difficult to see often-noted 'semageness' in them," said Semage.


Tallying Italy, as a matter of fact, is a challenging task. Italy has a totally different religio-philosophical ideology behind its culture. Being active partners in the progress of vibrant Western culture, Italians are eloquently fashionable, expressively modern and revolutionally original in their aesthetics.

The paintings that Semage used to showcase in the Far-Eastern galleries, which were traditionally eastern, spiritually Buddhist and stylistically Ajanta-Sigiri, may not be a fitting fiesta to Italian eyes.

Semage knows that Pizza hut may not be the best place to serve string hoppers. So, he has, in his aesthetic meditations, taken a lot of inspiration from the paintings of Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo, enriching his horizon with new themes and a broader vision. Jayasiri Semage will leave Sri Lanka on December 2 with his specially created paintings.

His paintings will be on exhibition there in Italy for one month, providing a new experience to sophisticated Italian viewers.

LANKAPUVATH - National News Agency of Sri Lanka
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