New Dimensions of Vinod Daroz’ Ceramic art
I found Vinod Daroz’ art works every time displayed in different forms in different exhibitions. He works in ceramic medium. When we think of Ceramic art we immediately think about tea cups and saucers and flower pots. Modern artists started making pots more meaningfully and later the ceramic art field started making sculptural forms in ceramic medium. I thought it is better to go to Vinod’s studio in Baroda to understand his art forms. A conversation with him-
Where do you hale from?
My native place is Kalwakurthy, a place near Hyderabad.
Is there anyone in the family who is already working in the art field?
My uncle, younger brother of my father, P.R.Daroz is a known ceramic artist in the field. He studied in Baroda Fine Arts Faculty. We had a jewelers shop, printing press and family business. I used to do gold work in jewelery workshop after coming from the school. I lost my father at the end of my schooling. I was not able to understand anything, even about the studies. I did not like the graduation course though I joined. My uncle came to Hyderabad in those days to install one of his art works in one hotel. I was inspired looking at that. He lives in Delhi. I requested him I would go to Delhi and assist him. He explained me that I should go and study in Baroda Art College and then I should think of going there. My elder brother liked art. Because of the family responsibilities he had to take up family business. He encouraged me to go and study art in Baroda. I studied BFA in Sculpture and then Ceramics in MFA. I was home sick to begin with, but had adjusted later, could settle down and worked further.
Does your family enjoy your international name and your growth as an artist?
Our family does not understand much about the art field. But my uncle encourages me to do big size art works. The Furnace I have allows me do the works only up to certain sizes. I want to establish my big studio, big kiln and do big works.
I find no flower pots in your studio though you are a ceramic artist. I find new shapes of flowers and leaves. What are these forms, look like Ridge Gourd vegetables?
You can think my work is metamorphosed from pots. I used to make sculptural forms after the pots that I made initially. Later I started making ceramic forms inspired from the nature. When I went to a residency program in China I learnt to work with porcelain. That material allows very thin and sensitive forms as well the strength of that material is very strong.
Whatever the form you make whether it is a flower or any other form, all the forms are very beautiful, meaningful and they are poetic.
For the last 15 years I take the inspiration from our Indian temples and architecture. I went to Srisailam temple, enjoyed observing Srichakram, the patterns and the forms over it. My ceramic plate works and the motifs over them are inspired by those motifs. When I went to Kanchipuram, Hampi, I thouroughly enjoyed sculptures over the pillars and temple walls. I do not work with the temple forms and patterns like a devotee. I work for the meanings and the forms of such structures and their styles. Every form of temple is meaningful, as it is meaningful about Siva’s Linga form symbolizing man and woman relationship.
In our villages people worship stones applying Kumkum and turmeric, tie colored threads to those stones, as a vow asking to fulfill their desires. I make ceramic forms that look like those stones and tie threads to derive similar forms. I use various materials to gain the meanings and forms that I want to make.
What kind of materials?
I use wood. I use 12 carat gold because gold indicates high value of meanings. I make stencil designs and transfer them to the wet ceramic forms before baking. All my designs look as if I am repeating the motifs, but they are not. Every design is different from another one.
What is this form, looks like our motor and pastel used in the kitchens as grinding stones?
Yes. It is like the same grinding stone. In a way it looks like our kitchen stone, also it is similar to Sivalinga form and generates the meanings of Prakriti Purusha, man and woman relation. I make many formats and designs that look like grinding stone.
I find butterflies very meaningful. Small size Ridge Gourds are available in Taiwan. I made similar shapes with porcelain and fixed those forms on flat plates. That looks like butterflies. I find lot of meanings in lot our daily activities, materials and the forms we use. I try to recreate them.
We learnt wire-cut technique right in our student days. I used that technique to cut the ceramic plate to create sand dunes of desserts. I like this work so much.
Whatever the work you create, there is a perfection and fineness.
That is because of my teacher Jyotsna Bhatt. She taught us to develop respect on clay. She used to say that is like gold, nothing less for a ceramic artist. She made us to work till we reached the perfection.
Your work also has the forms similar to Chinese Pagodas.
I work thinking about shapes of temple top-Gopuram. When I was in UK on Charles Wallace fellowship Tsunami devastated many places. That time my thoughts ran around Budhhism for sure.
Did you read Hindu philosophy?
No. I only work with many aspects of temple forms for their meanings.
[Interviewed by Dr.M.Balamani. This article is a translation of a Telugu article published in Sopathi Sunday magazine, Navatelangana Telugu news papers on 7th April 2019.]