Latika Nehra, a self-taught ceramic artist hailing from Jaipur & based in Berlin, has carved a distinctive niche for herself by seamlessly melding time-honoured techniques with a fresh, innovative perspective. Her creations are not mere objects; they are a visual exploration of material culture and an inquiry into the interplay between tradition and the modern world. This melding of past and present gives rise to an art form that transcends time and resonates with the viewer on a deeply contemplative level.
Born in 1991, Latika Nehra embarked on her artistic journey with an academic foundation in visual design. However, it was in 2020 that she embraced ceramics as her primary medium. This uncharted territory allowed her to bridge the gap between age-old hand-building practices and contemporary materials, pushing the boundaries of what utilitarian vessels and conceptual art can be.
The coiling technique, one of the oldest methods in pottery, is the cornerstone of Nehra's creative process. With an adept hand, she coils and sculpts textured clay bodies into vessels that are not just functional, but profoundly expressive. Each piece resonates with a palpable human touch, embodying bodily gestures and organic textures. It is in the absence of a glaze that the true essence of the form is revealed. Raw and unadulterated, these works harness the primal appeal of the material itself.
What sets Nehra's sculptures apart is her ability to capture the essence of movement and emotion within the confines of clay. When asked about the inspiration behind her shapes and silhouettes, she reveals a fascination with human motion. Fairly anthropomorphic, her vessels are akin to frozen gestures, encapsulating the fluidity of limbs and the posture of a person in the throes of motion. It is a testimony to her artistic prowess that she can imbue clay with such vitality, evoking the fleeting moments that define the human experience.
Yet, her creativity isn't constrained by mere replication. Nehra's sculptural forms often transcend realism, manifesting in abstracted silhouettes that resonate with the viewer's subconscious. She speaks of building curves that mimic the stance of a person or the boundless chaos found within seaside cliffs. Her sketches, while serving as initial blueprints, take a back seat to the organic process of clay manipulation. The very material she works with seems to possess a life of its own, guiding her hands toward the creation of shapes that defy convention.
In an era increasingly dominated by the virtual, Nehra's ceramics offer a tangible antidote. They stand as a testament to the physicality of art and the profound impact of sensory experiences. Each sculpture is a tribute to the past, a nod to tradition, and a dialogue with the present — a masterpiece that transcends time and sparks contemplation in the hearts of all who encounter it. Latika Nehra's creations are not merely sculptures; they are gateways to a world where form, emotion, and material converge in breathtaking harmony.