ISP Delhi Bureau
Dr Pravin Puthra can be termed a rare breed of a government officer. He successfully pursued his passion and vision while performing his duty with utmost dedication. What he is now left with is a rare bunch of memories beautifully illustrated in canvases now being exhibited nationally.
A former Assistant Director-General of Marine Fisheries with the Indian Council of Agricultural Research, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, Government of India, Dr Pravin has put together a bunch of artwork influenced by his research in the field.
A gifted person with painting and cartooning skills, Dr. Pravin pursued his hobby of putting his experiences on canvas from the thousands of pictures he had from his career during the Covid times. The themes of his artwork are influenced by his research work in the field of fisheries and aquaculture. His series of paintings, now being exhibited in Delhi at India Habitat Centre and AIFACS gallery, is inspired by the day-to-day lives of the fishermen, their culture and traditions.
The paintings are largely an encyclopaedia of various kinds of fishing boats of India from various coastal locations and even from island locations of Andaman and Lakshadweep. Apart from the boats and the fishing nets, it also beautifully captures glimpses of the essence and beauty of the lives and livelihood of the fishing community. It efficiently puts into perspective the traditional and modern practices in fishing seen in different regions of India.
Apart from being an ace agricultural officer of the government, Dr Pravin has been a regular contributor to cartoons in the ‘Fishing Chimes’, a popular fisheries magazine. His cartoons have appeared in journals and were also published in a book titled ‘Fishtoons’.
“This is a humble attempt to bring out the essence of the activities of the fishers in the country. These were captured on my personal camera during my official trips to these locations. During the pandemic time, I sat down to make paintings of it all. It was a beautiful experience and I am happy people are appreciating it, “Dr Pravin to ISP.
This has given meaning to my professional work. I had lots of opportunities to interact with the fishing community and to understand their lives. It’s a tribute to their hard work which I try to present through my drawings, he adds.
In 2013, Dr Pravin held a solo watercolour painting exhibition in Kerala and later the second series of artwork was painted by him and his daughter Pravia, a communication researcher, and was exhibited in Mangalore in 2021.