T.V. Santhosh





Born in Kerala, T.V. Santhosh obtained his B.F.A in painting from Santiniketan and Masters in Sculpture from MS University, Vadodara. T V. Santhosh has acquired a major presence in the Indian and International art scene over the last decade with several successful shows with many international art galleries and museums. Santhosh’s recent sculptural installation from ‘Passage to India’ is in the Frank Cohen collection at Initial Access. Some of his prominent museum shows are Collectors’ Stage: Asian Contemporary Art from Private Collections, Singapore Art Museum, Singapore; The Silk Road, New Chinese, Indian and Middle Eastern Art from The Saatchi Gallery at  Tri Postal, Lille, France; Dark Materials curated by David Thorp, G S K Contemporary show, at Royal Academy of Arts, London;  India Xianzai, MOCA, Shanghai, China, Passage to India, Part II: New Indian Art from the Frank Cohen Collection, at Initial Access, Wolverhampton, UK; Passage to India, Part I: New Indian Art from the Frank Cohen Collection, at Initial Access, Wolverhampton, UK, Where in the World, Devi Art Foundation, Delhi, Continuity and Transformation, Museum show, exhibition promoted by Provincia di Milano Italy, Anupam Poddar Collection at Daimler Chrysler Contemporary, Berlin, After Shock, curated by Yasmin Canvin in collaboration with Sainsbury Centre Museum, Norwich,and Continuity and Transformation, Museum show, Exhibition promoted by Provincia di Milano Italy.

“The artistic career of TV Santhosh has been single-mindedly focused, and intensely so, on one, singular area of human activity, leaving in the public domain a visual consolidation of his concern. This body of work can be seen as an attempt to chart ‘the un-making of the world, a pulling apart’ by the debased and continual effects of dehumanization. Although his paintings and sculptures are sentient to violence, of lurking danger and the pervasive surge upon surge of (de-racinated) inquiries, his renditions remain unapologetic in looking at the open wounds in our failing world. His quixotic vision of someone from the inside willingly looking further remains stubbornly unapologetic, pervasively critical, making one understand the passion and the role of ‘the artist of our time". – Shaheen Merali

“One of the elements that instantly captures the critical imagination of the viewer while engaging with the works of T.V. Santhosh is the meticulous way in which they transgress the mundane media images into the realm of a critique of media-culture in general. This character of our global society is one of the center-points of T.V. Santhosh’s artistic scrutiny. One of the recurring thematic of T.V. Santhosh’s work can be broadly defined as the overarching presence of the notion of violence in contemporary societal life. His works simultaneously engage with the physicality of violence as well as the notions of violence produced by various statist apparatuses. 

The media-driven imageries thrust to produce the answer of who they ‘really’ are, further stereotypes certain communities and cultures and endangers the polity in substantial ways. In this context, T.V. Santhosh’s attempt to critically scrutinize the media imageries acquires the status of a complex political positioning. This is not to say that T.V. Santhosh’s positioning is absolutely devoid of the vulnerability of the citizen-subject. But this recognition of vulnerability allow us to further identify that more than violence what constitutes the thematic of his works are the ways in which the citizen-subjects experience and perceive these various forms of violence. The genealogy of the transgressive tactics of T.V. Santhosh displays that images are not a mere outcome of our ‘pure’ imagination but our imaginations are the by-product of the image of the ‘real’ constructed through multiple ideological mediations.” –Santhosh .S

“His paintings are based on images taken from the news media which Santhosh renders in solarised colour schemes, in reference to photographic negatives. His images of choice document war, terrorism and violence. What strikes us immediately about Santhosh is his grasp of the crises of our globalised present, his taste for translating current events, even as they unfold, into narratives that are too allegorical to be history, yet too mutable to be myth. His pattern of selection is determined, however, by the key themes of war and catastrophe: his is an art attentive to the specific idioms of contemporary global conflict, to the diabolical pact between knowledge and terror, the skewed antagonism between puissant globality and weakened locality. Significantly, the artist is preoccupied with the distortion of science and technology into vehicles of terror: the laboratory, as much as the battlefield, is where the action of his paintings is set; the two venues are often conflated.” - Ranjit Hoskote

He lives and works in Mumbai. 



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