musings, aesthetics, breakthroughs

  • A discussion in album art: cold/mess

  • Magritte x Prateek Kuhad

  • The Death of Painting

  • Cassette | August 

A discussion in album art: cold/mess

Prateek Kuhad is a boon for the indie music landscape in India. His singing-songwriting is melting, pastoral, and at times, a passenger evoking style. A few weeks ago, he released a new album - 'Cold/Mess', and it rendered us breathless. Our SoundCloud screens were a hue of dark blue, the kind only acrylic paints bring about on paper. Lovers locking lips, embracing- a vision to stare at for a while. 

100 words will pause you, it will shift you from your office seat, it will shake you ever so gently. His album, when played 'til the end, took my hand, and led me to a screen'. That is basically how his whole album goes. 

Cold/mess is music that will one day, maybe, change our lives because it arrived at the right time. 

Magritte x Prateek Kuhad

Frustrated desires are a common theme in René Magritte’s work. Here, a barrier of fabric prevents the intimate embrace between two lovers, transforming an act of passion into one of isolation and frustration. Some have interpreted this work as a depiction of the inability to fully unveil the true nature of even our most intimate companions.

A sheer cloth prevents the intimate embrace between two lovers in Rene Magritte's The Lovers. What should have been a moment of fierce passion turns into one of frustrated desires. And if you've ever been in love, this version seems a more realistic portrayal than the ones shown in our ever romantic movies. There is passion, there is desire, and yet at times there is that frustrating lump in your throat which you can't quite seem to explain, and yet which Prateek Kuhad manages to make us feel in his beautiful way.

Perhaps fitting then, that the cover art for his latest album bares resemblance to the paintings by Magritte. Similar emotions portrayed beautifully in his songs, and complimented with such fitting cover art. One could also argue how Magritte predicted modern day love in his timeless paintings, but that's another conversation for another time.

“Let me be clear. Painting and sculpture as we know them are not dying of any stylistic disease, of anything diagnosed by the professionally horrified as cultural decadence; they are dying because, in the world as it is, no work of art can survived and not become valuable property. And it implies the death of painting and sculpture property, as once it was not, is now inevitably opposed to all other values. People believe in property but in essence, they only believe in the illusion of protection which property gives. All works of fine art, whatever their content, whatever the sensibility of an individual spectator, must now be reckoned as no more than props for the confidence of the world spirit of conservatism.”

- John Berger, Understanding a Photograph, 1968


No points for guessing who's top of our playlist this month - Prateek Kuhad with cold/mess.

Salt in the Sea - Shantanu Pandit
Let's climb trees and mountains when I get back - Jeevan Antony 
We find Love - Daniel Caesar
Philosophise - Parekh & Singh  

... and there's more where these come from.
Give it a listen?

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P.P.S. If you have thoughts (on), an piece of art, music, poetry- write to us, so we can start a discussion with our community.