Independent Artist, Nepal
Beyond the Notion
Govinda's intention in his work is to demonstrate the invisible by means of the visible. In other words, in visually depicted cloud movements he attempts to paint invisible concepts such as morality, the environment, the sublime and spirituality. Almost every religion has adopted clouds as symbols of creation, fertility or heaven. In this there is commonality between religions. His MA thesis was entitled 'Can clouds re-established the symbolic interpretation of spirituality and sublime contemporary art?' The paper examined how artists from JMW Turner to contemporary artist Anis Kapoor have used clouds to represent spirituality or the sublime. His choice of subject matter began with landscape and temples from his country, Nepal and even included a three month solo cycle tour of Nepal. However, while painting the Annapurna Mountain range from Pokhara he experienced a sublime sun rise. Clouds that began like small bubbles eventually filled the sky. The subject of his paintings from that moment changed.
His works also suggest an infinite universe, this invisible space portrayed by the visible cloud. This echoes a Hindu proverb that says that God is in everything living and non-living; in the earth or the sky. His presence is everywhere and nothing is in his absence. Govinda began to paint that god of the gap, this space, this emptiness or dark matter. Author Anthony Blake has said of his work, 'His very tangible, textured, exquisite and astonishing canvases are windows into primordial worlds and the mystery of how nothing becomes something'.
Born in 1974 Rajbiraj, Nepal, Govinda Sah graduated with a BA in Fine Art in 2003, has a MA in Fine Art from Dhaka, Bangladesh in 2006 and gained a MA in Fine Art from Wimbledon College of Art in 2008. From an early age he was interested in drawing and sculpture, and spent most of his time drawing and sculpting copies of Hindu Gods from photos and sculptures. From 1991-94 he worked as a sign board and wall painter in Delhi, India. In 1995 he returned to Kathmandu and joined the Fine Art College. While at College he had several group shows and exhibitions. His first solo exhibition was in 1999 which was successful, and the Professor and Campus Chief of the Fine art College and prominent artist Govinda Dangol dubbed him 'Lion Heart'. To date, he has held 24 solo art exhibitions and group shows in Nepal and internationally and has co-ordinated a number of Art Workshops under the sponsorship of the UN and Bangladesh Embassy in Nepal. His art works can be found in private, public and government collections in Nepal and worldwide.