Ianthe Elapata started sculpture late in life although she dabbled in 'meaningful' drawings as a teenager. Life was not particularly creative in an artistic sense …though she did dream.
Her chance of becoming an artist came about in January 2003 when she joined the Colombo Academy of Art, a school of painting, drawing, sculpture and pottery managed by Dr. Sarath Chandrajeewa, a sculptor, painter, bronze caster and potter as well as Senior Lecturer at the University of Visual and Performing Arts.
Here Ianthe was given the freedom to work with different media and had the opportunity to develop her own style as a sculptor. This 'style', according to her, is ever evolving and her favourite medium is one that she is still searching for.
Ianthe will showcase her work, around 35 pieces in all, made over the years on sunny Friday afternoons at class using cement, metal, wire, resin, terracotta (painted and glazed) and bronze.
Her works include the Shiva Nataraj with Silencer Heads cast in cement supported by a metal frame, the Wire Woman, one the most exhaustive pieces made by her over a year, wrapping copper and brass wire onto an aluminum frame, the Pregnant Teenager, a sculpture made using cement applied directly onto a frame made of rigifoam, Egg Lamps cast in resin, the Rather Fat Woman in glazed terracotta, the Melting Men cast in cement, the Plates in painted terracotta and the Starving cast in bronze.
"I keep thinking of all the pieces I want to make and all the techniques I want to master. Looking back I wish I had been able to spend more time working on sculpture instead of having to 'fit it in' between work and children, but then some of my inspiration did arise from work and my children would always be ready to model when I am stuck with a difficult body part," she says.
Ianthe Elapata will showcase her art at the Gandhara Gallery, 28 Stratford Avenue, Kirulapone, Colombo 6 from August 6-18.