Artist Undone

Artist Undone
January 2012 by Hachette India
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‘I can see where you are going. Up shit creek…with a paddle.’ He was right. That is where I was going. It was the kind of thing that my analyst had always warned me against: ‘You are at an inflexion point, in a mood to do the irrational and the irreverent.’ He forgot irreversible. Harsh Sinha – ‘Fat, F**ked and Forty’ – is so moved by a painting bearing this name and a compelling likeness to him, that he spends a large chunk of his life’s savings on it. Announcing a year-long sabbatical from his advertising job in Mumbai, he returns to Chennai to his wife and daughter, determined to spend quality time with them. Sadly, his wife Gayathri no longer wants him; she is more interested in the artist next door. The artist, Newton Kumaraswamy, is an inveterate womanizer and a famous thief – his every work an ode to that acknowledged master, Francis Newton Souza. With no job to turn to, and no family to lean on, Harsh returns to Mumbai to let himself freefall further into the seductive world of contemporary Indian art and artists… Sharp, rough, and written with biting candour, Artist, Undone is a beguiling narrative of one man’s understanding of the creation, the commerce and the critiquing of contemporary art. It is also a montage of lives changed – mauled, redefined and occasionally redeemed – by it.