My work is inspired by the sweetness of a village fair in my childhood days the sounds of the paper flutes, the images through the bio-scope and the stories of the monkey man. The simplicity of childhood is within me still and, I believe, shouldnt be lost by any of us says Subir.
Alongside these images of childhood, Subir often features characterful iconic objects in his work the typewriter, the telephone, the gramophone – symbols of an India and indeed a world passing by. These objects, once very much in demand, are no longer of practical use to us. But they still contain a magic that speaks to us today, he explains
Subir manipulates watercolour in a distinctive way. Bold and bright blocks of colour, rarely associated with the medium, are characteristic of his work. He builds the richness of colours in layers, wash upon wash, introducing details and characters as he goes. In some of his works he also uses calligraphy in either Sanskrit or English to narrate an element of history.
Talking about his techniques Subir says, I work with watercolours because theres a transparency to them you don't get with anything else theres nowhere to hide. The boldness of the colours I use are the colours of my own most bright and joyful childhood memories. I am also deeply passionate about the spirit and tradition of mythological paintings, Kalighat Potchitra and Madhubani for example. These paintings continue to inspire me and my work.