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W. Vasantha Perera:

A stickler for accuracy

Most artists who, on account of parental pressure or other circumstances, begin their working lives in a different profession and regret the time thus spent as time wasted. Weerakkodige Vasantha Perera is one of the rare exceptions.

He showed artistic inclinations early in life. Vasantha Perera's activity as an artist is inextricably enmeshed with both his own social and cultural formation and the momentum and tensions of the Sri Lankan Society in which he elected to work.

A self-taught artist, Vasantha has honed techniques that he believes are a beneficial result of an unschooled learning. His life as an artist began with wildlife which he says is his first love. As a wildlife artist he owes all his success to the animals he paints.

Having proved his ability to arouse the enthusiasm of his art lovers with his wildlife paintings, Vasantha then turned his hand to another branch of art-landscape painting.

One of his eye-catching creations

W. Vasantha Perera

In the landscape composition he used drawings made from nature. His landscapes had all sorts of themes that stimulated his imagination. From time to time Vasantha painted landscapes with a frank and tasteful felicity.

The true artist is a biographer not only in his portraits but in all his other paintings-whether he depicts a scene in action, a quiet landscape or an abstract idea. Like the photographer, he imitates reality. But the superior artist illumines it. He defines, and in a sense refines, the subject that he paints so that his brush brings out the essential significance - that is the life story - of Vasantha's paintings.

He adds to the painting the colour of his own personality. He infused into his pictures a 'creamy richness' a mellow grandeur of red, green, blue and yellow. This peculiarity of colour distinguishes the portraits of Vasantha's from all the work of his contemporaries.

At about the same time he developed an interest for architecture. In his works the many historic buildings portray his leanings in architecture.

The temple of the Sacred Tooth Relic as it lies overlooking the Kandy Lake resurrection of the vintage 'Giragama Walawwa' the renowned Lankathilaka Raja Maha Vihara with the roofins characteristic of the Kandyan era are a few of many he has illustrated that evokes appreciation in his book named 'Kandy Sketch Book'.

His second collection of work studying, observing and recreating in his own flair an appreciation of the heritage and soul of Kandy, through historic sights, people and other intricies. The majority of pictorials are of transparent water-colour, while some illustrations are in black and white with fine lines.

Vasantha's first publication was Jaffna, the book titled 'a painter's journey through the land of palm trees! Vasantha has captured scenic beauty and places of interest Jaffna had to offer.

He has been able to see with his keen artist's eye and reproduce unerringly their countenance and posture that speak of an innate strength and dignity of a people with rich cultural heritage and a history that runs back to thousands of years.

This book is and will always remain a unique work of art as this is a collection of paintings done by an artist in a former war zone.

Vasantha is an accomplished and internationally acclaimed artist who has held very successful art exhibitions at prestigious venues in various countries in the world. He has designed a number of stamps depicting nature art for the Sri Lanka Philatelic Bureau.

 

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