The Galleon - Portsmouth's Student Newspaper



Call me Bobo: The Galleon chat with artist Ayushman Mitra

Vibrant colours, interlocking features, shapes that seem to move and speak as you study them, and patterns that would look just as comfortable on a t-shirt or carpet as a canvas. 24 year old Ayushman Mitra, hailing from Calcutta, India has created a collection of beautiful and intricate artwork that has featured in music videos and exhibitions alike. His muse is his heritage and human emotion. The Galleon spoke to the artist about his latest work, inspirations and aspirations.

‘Bobo’ [Mitra’s nickname and artist pseudonym] is an utterly charming and passionate character who engages with all he meets, just as his paintings do. There is meaning and emotion behind every stroke of the brush and each bold block of colour.

Bobo’s collections have a distinct motif of a split face, which for him are a “metaphor for the human personality. It is a symbol of the struggle that one goes through while choosing an identity.” Bobo says that the main emotion of his work is “the struggle between what we are and what we are supposed to be.”

Surely this is something most people have experienced and perhaps is why Bobo’s work is so appealing, as it mirrors not only his emotions, but takes note of everyone’s personal struggles.

Another relatable subject of Bobo’s art is love. Whether this comes through family, friendships, relationships, religion or any other source, the strength of love is referenced in his paintings as he says, “I truly believe love is the strongest force that runs this planet and it is our only way out to try and sustain our fragile world.”

Bobo also explains the meaning of his motif of the split face in a lip lock: “The motive behind it is to break through social norms of suppression and embrace one’s true self. Sexuality has always been an inspiration to my art, thus the lip lock also stands as a symbol of rebellion against judgements that do not acknowledge ones right to choose one’s sexual orientation.”

1. A Better World

“A man holds the lifeless body of his lover who kills himself in hope to be born in a better world.”

2. In The Laps Of My Creator

“A young boy sits on the lap of hindu god Ganesh, and decorates his crown with lotus weeds.”

3. Beauty In Chaos

“It is a tribute to the thousands of transgenders who work as street entertainers and sex workers in India to make a living.”

4. In Sweet Chaos

“I fell in love with a straight man and have been in love with him. There is not much to the relationship but a sweet chaos in between the looks we exchange, that makes me hope he will acknowledge my love someday. Just hope.”

5. The Lovers Of Regents Park

“Inspired by the lovers of London and the blooming glory of its parks in the summer of 2013.”

6. Embrace

“A rush of joy.”

More of Bobo’s work can be viewed on his Instagram and Facebook pages:

Instagram: @ayushmanmitra



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