Stories Of The Jungle is a solo show of recent works by Dhavat Singh presented by Gallery Ragini. Dhavat hails from Patangarh, a village surrounded by the forests of Madhya Pradesh. His work captures the forests that surrounded the village and farmland he grew up in – the hierarchy of the animals, the prey and the predator, the nests – with a layer of the folk tales he grew up on. His keen understanding of the forest and the animal shines through in his works.
For Dhavat, these works are also a documentation of the forest as he knows it, not the one we see today and not the one we are heading towards. As the forestry department deforests and reforests in the vicinity, a stark difference between the two becomes visible in the ecosystem, the new trees planted, the number of animals in the forest, and how they interact with changed environment.
His fear of the changes brought on by this change, and the continuing trend, inspired Dhavat to preserve the memory of the forest he knows and grew up with through his art.