Art along the river bank

Iram Tasleem

Do you know there is 8000 litres of water in your jeans or seven litres in your A4 size? We either don’t know or do not care when we have abundant water for use.
Installation artist Bhavani GS, hailing from Kodagu village of Karnataka, who grew up amidst forests, rivers and mountains, is now creating awareness about the need for water conservation through her unique art work.
Bhavani, in her forties, is a freelance artist immensely inspired by nature. Her art installations and paintings say a lot about her urge to save, respect and conserve our mother nature. She decided to unravel the serenity and beauty of nature in its own unique style and started doing installations alongside of river banks with the material she found near the river. A beauiful rangoli in Sipna river in Melghat Tiger River in Nagpur by stone pebbles showcasing different colours in water due to presence of different types of algae, is a case in point.


In her quest for conserving nature and water, Bhavani travelled along Kaveri river which originates from Kodagu, her birthplace. And this she did with her camera, travelling along the river till it flows in Bay of Bengal. She says: “I enjoyed being with river. Travelling alongside it, I kept thinking why are there water wars, especially between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu? Farmers are committing suicides People are dying as they are not getting water.”
In earlier days, people had lesser demands, but today people have become more materialistic. Bhavani says: “Earlier during my childhood, we would get a new dress only during festivals but nowadays people pick clothes from market anytime. Hence people are producing more, which requires water.”
To encourage people to save and conserve, Bhavani has come up with an interesting concept of virtual water.Virtual water is estimated water used in manufacturing of items.
So her research found that approximately 1500 litres of water is required to grow half kg of rice, around 1900 litres of water is required to reap one kilogram of mangoes, to get one litre of soft drink at leasty seven litres of water is needed. An average person uses 3500 litres of water per day. As everything we produce requires water, so one should be cautious while using water.
Her video titled ‘Embedded water’ has been appreciated and was shown at the Jaipur Kala Chaupal.
Bhavani has been awarded scholarship for her outstanding work from Lalith kala Academy and Culture department, Karnataka. She has been invited by residency to Munich for her exceptional artistic works and installations.
She got support from family and friends which helped her to reach so far. Bhavani’s artistic works and project could be seen on her website

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