TDT | Manama
The Daily Tribune – www.newsofbahrain.com
A prominent Indian artist, who is on a visit to the Kingdom, has praised the Kingdom ’ s milestones in the field of arts. Kodankandath Antony Francis, who has participated in many global art events such as Austrian Biennale, London Biennale and Florence Biennale said the Kingdom is fast emerging as the Arabian Gulf’s foremost art and culture hub. “The unparalleled patronage extended by the Kingdom’s leadership along with the contributions made by the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities have made the nation truly the art capital of the region. I consider it a privilege to be able to visit this country.” Mr Francis, who uses Khadi canvas (Khadi is a hand-spun woven natural fibre cloth) and natural colours, has been a peace campaigner associated with the grouping ‘World Without War’. “Becoming an artist definitely bears a huge responsibility towards humanity.
I have always been influenced by the Gandhian principles of peace and coexistence. I use my art works to champion the concept of peace and coexistence.” The great artist said “death and its related mysteries” also became a theme for many of his works as “birth and death remain the exclusive truths of life”. “The theme given to us at the Austrian Biennale was ‘Your Day in Paradise’. I gave a thought on the topic and would discover that nothing was as paradiscial as my nine months inside my mother’s womb.
I made a painting centre around this thought, which was overwhelmingly accepted and appreciated by the art world.” Looking forward, Mr Francis plans to showcase his works in the Kingdom. Away from an artist, the 62-year-old served the Indian Customs Department in the capacity of top official. He has led many risky operations and raids to curb the activities and spread of smuggling and narcotic mafia in India, for which he has won many accolades. Mr Francis’ daughter and son-in-law are Bahrain residents.