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Written by Ishita Singh
This Friendship’s Day we bring you artist friends who collaborated together on projects, shared ideas or generally had a lot of fun together. These artists brought together due to work or college education based their friendship on inspiration and an intention to communicate certain ideas through their works. Collaborations between artists have arisen due to the alignment of things they wanted to communicate and how they wanted to communicate it. Some artists had friendships that remind me of only one term: passion. Not a romantic one but a passion for art. These artists temperamental were inspired so much by their friendships that it influenced their entire body of work and these ended just as scandalously.
Paul Gauguin and Van Gogh
This has got to be by far the craziest friendship in the world. At least if you call a relationship that leaves one without a ear. Yes that is how the relationship ended: leaving Van Gogh one ear less. Books have been written about their friendships and recent study of the letters exchanged between the artists suggests that Paul Gauguin cut off Van Gogh’s ear with a sword after a disagreement. Van Gogh concealed the information because he wanted to continue his friendship and Gauguin for obvious reasons to avoid conviction. The two met when Gauguin had achieved some fame and Van Gogh was a fan. They inspired each other’s works and the famous sunflowers by Van Gogh are a result of this friendship.
Salvador Dali and Man Ray
This Surrealist bromance between Salvador Dali and Man Ray resulted in a strange friendship and hilariously odd photography. The antics of the two are captured in various photo projects they worked on together. Their friendship is depicted in Woody Allen’s Midnight in Paris in the most quirky fashion. Dali also posed for photographs for Man Ray.
Jean-Michel Basquiat and Andy Warhol
Basquiat had wanted to be Warhol’s friend since forever but the popular artist had blown him off socially several times. In 1982 a mutual friend introduced them when he got the smitten Basquiat to the Factory. After that their friendship took off and do did their collaborative work. At that time they just did portraits together, worked on several hundred paintings. In 1985 they did an exhibition together which failed terribly. At this their friendship soured and Basquiat remained with the constant guilt that he did not do enough to repair their friendship. Sadly soon after in 1987 Warhol died and in 1998 Basquiat.
RAQS Media Collective
These three, Jeebesh Bagchi, Monica Narula and Shuddhabrata Sengupta, met at university and loved working with each other on the assigned film projects. And since then they have been working together as a team. For them this team works so well together is because they love sharing ideas, dreams, questions and curiosities. They disagreed and fought then, they disagree and fight now, just like all friends except they are really cool. The conversations they loved having with each other they converted into art.
Pors and Rao
Amrita Rao and Soren Pors have been working together since 2001 and they are not a couple as they come off as in first impression. To think that two individuals, Amrita Rao from India and Soren Pors from Germany met in Italy and have since then been working and thinking together is really quite amazing. They work on projects that take excruciatingly and painfully long to execute. It would require a constant exchange of ideas.
Thukral and Tagra
Jiten Thukral and Sumir Tagra have been working together since 2000 and have known each other from way before that when they were designing the BoseDK t-shirts. They were destined to meet, when they first met at Chandigarh College of Arts and Thukral played a prank on Tagra and later at Delhi College of Art. It is there that their friendship began and also began a long successful and extremely interesting artistic alliance. They come from varied backgrounds and they have combined both middle and business class and Punjabi aspirations into their artistic expression.
Chitra Ganesh and Dhruvi Acharya
The latest artist friends’ collaboration to take place that had the art world raving about was that of Chitra Ganesh and Dhruvi Acharya. The two came together for a live painting art project at the India Art Fair 2015. For three days straight the two artists painted on a huge canvas snippets from their lives, their nightmare and dreams, hopes and failures. The two essentially became friends due to the similarity in their artistic practice and expression both influenced by comic art and inspired by mythological tales.