The art of Suhas Tavkar shows a unique relationship between the human form and the human touch that created it….
Here is a little information about me and my history. I was born in 1942 and raised in Mumbai (Bombay), India.
I was exposed to the art of NakhaChitra - fingernail drawing as a child. I started doing NakhaChitra, on paper, at the age of four. For the last 36 years, I have been residing in Queens, New York. Even today, for the last 66 years, I still create NakhaChitra drawings on paper. I have learned this unusual and rare fingernail relief technique from my late father, Anant Tavkar, who was an architect. He learned the technique from his father and mother as a child. NakhaChitra art has been practiced by my family members for many, many generations, even before 1562.
'Nakhachitrakala' (fingernail sculpted drawing technique) is one of the world's rarest, ancient, unique, and unknown art forms. “Nakha” means fingernail, “Chitra” means drawing, and “Nakhachitrakar” means fingernail sculpted artist in the Sanskrit language of the Hindus. I believe that humans may have started this art form at the beginning of the human race through etchings on materials, such as soft wooden bark, mud, or on large banana or lotus leaves with the use of their fingernails as a tool for creating drawings and writing. It takes us back at least to the 5th century AD, when Kalidasa, the great play writer and poet of the Sanskrit language, mentioned in his play “The Recognition of Shakuntala” that a love letter was written by Shakuntala on a lotus leaf with her fingernail. This reference shows that people from India were using Nakha (fingernails) regularly for writing on leaves. However, I believe that “Nakhachitrakala” (fingernail sculpted drawing technique and fingernail calligraphy) originated thousands of years ago, exclusively in ancient India and may have been taught at the oldest university of Takshashila in India. Despite Nakhachitrakar’s ancient history, it has not been referenced by any art history books or museums. (Article on NakhaChitra was written by Austin Williams and published in American Artist Drawing magazine in 2009).
I believe “Every living creature on earth is an artist and also a wonderful piece of art.”
“Quality is never an Accident. It is Always the Result of Intelligent Efforts. There must be a will to produce a Superior thing” - by John Ruskin.