Beachfront Masterpieces: How A Goa-Based Installation Artist Brings The Ocean To Life

Subodh Kerkar's beachfront masterpieces.
Subodh Kerkar's beachfront masterpieces.Subodh Kerkar

"I consider myself an ocean artist. The ocean is both, inside and outside my works; my master and my muse. I celebrate the ocean as a creator of civilizations. I am an avid student of history which becomes a footnote to most of my works."

Subodh Kerkar

'Fisherman and the Ocean'
'Fisherman and the Ocean'Subodh Kerkar

Subodh Kerkar, the founder of Museum of Goa Art Gallery, is an installation artist and painter hailing from Goa. He describes himself as an ‘ocean artist’, as the ocean is both the inspiration and subject matter of his works. Fascinated by the vastness of the ocean, Subodh explores the depths of the seas and surfaces of obscure beaches, breathing life into his socio-political and religious commentaries with multimedia pieces that cover a range of subjects. From the relationship between fishermen and the sea to the ever-changing tides and boats, Subodh's narratives of visual history are both intricate and spirited.

Subodh's performances are nothing short of spellbinding. In his performance art series ‘Fisherman and the Ocean’, he explores the symbiotic dynamic between the two by visualising oceanic rituals. The fishermen are seen paying homage to the sea and celebrating its role in their lives by assuming formations similar to their fisherman boats. 

Subodh’s use of drone shots in his art adds to the theatrics of his messages. His performance installation ‘The Cross’ touches upon the ocean being the medium that spans across continents and facilitates exchanges between cultures and its people. In his Instagram caption, Subodh highlights how the ocean brought Christianity to India before it reached Europe, while it carried Hinduism and Buddhism to many other shores. ‘The Cross’ celebrates the fluid nature of migration. 

In his dynamic performance installation, ‘Navrasas’, Subodh collaborated with 40 Bharatnatyam dancers, who swayed along the shore of Morjim beach in their traditional outfits. The piece was a sight to behold, with the dancers' graceful movements harmonising with the waves and the sand. 

Subodh's sculptures, inspired by the deep sea, are equally fascinating. His "Oyster Plates" series, made from materials like stone, fibreglass, and ceramic with naturally formed oyster shells and pearls, is surrealistic and abstract. The sculptures encapsulate the mysteries of the ocean and the intimate relationship that humans share with it.

Oyster Plate
Oyster PlateSubodh Kerkar

For Subodh, the ocean is both a master and a muse, a creator of civilizations, and a never-ending source of inspiration.

You can view more of Subodh's work here.