Art of Grandfather Gandhi

Posted in Book's Journey, By Evan Turk, Illustrations | Comments Off on Art of Grandfather Gandhi

Post by Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustration © Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustration © Evan Turk

The illustrations for the book came out of a lot of different inspirations, and through trying to make pictures that communicated a beautiful foreign place, a historical figure, and a deep internal struggle.

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

Indian miniatures from “Garden & Cosmos: The Royal Paintings of Jodhpur, by Debra Diamond, Thames & Hudson, 2008 Indian miniatures from “Garden & Cosmos: The Royal Paintings of Jodhpur, by Debra Diamond, Thames & Hudson, 2008

The color, pattern, and layering came out of a love for Indian art and textiles. Because the story takes place in an ashram, where everyone wears simple white clothing, I gave in to my color and pattern loving impulses in the environment and the theatrics of the story.

Grandfather Gandhi Illustration © Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustration © Evan Turk

I used cotton, fabric, and yarn in the collages to emphasize Arun’s transformative journey through the book: from unruly, tangled, and angry, towards a spun, transformed thread. I also wanted to reference Gandhi’s own political movement to create Indian made textiles as a form of self-reliance and the transformation of India.

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

 

René Magritte (left), Giorgio de Chirico (right)

René Magritte (left), Giorgio de Chirico (right)

The shadows came out of looking at a lot of surrealist art and trying to find a way to exaggerate Arun’s inner turmoil and how he viewed himself and his anger. With the hot Indian sun, the long shadows presented a perfect way to do this.

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

Grandfather Gandhi Illustrations © Evan Turk

Indian Shadow Puppetry (Image from http://puppetryindia.org)

Indian Shadow Puppetry (Image from http://puppetryindia.org)

Towards the end of the book, where many of the illustrations are just light and dark with cut paper, I wanted them to feel like Indian shadow-puppet theater, as a way to transform the pictures at the climax of the book.