In Memoriam


The life of Virinder Chaudhery through his art

By Ken Narita, Staff Writer

From Jan. 20 to Feb. 17 “The Gallery” at Marygrove College is showcasing the work of Dr. Virinder Chaudhery. Chaudhery earned his Ph.D in Aesthetics and Art Education from the University of Michigan. He taught art and humanities classes at both Schoolcraft College and Wayne County Community College. His wife, Dr. Sumita Chaudhery, is a current professor for the English department at Schoolcraft.
“The Gallery” is found on the fourth floor of the Liberal Arts building on the Marygrove College campus in Detroit, Michigan. A distinguishing feature of the Gallery is the solid bronze grillwork at the entrance of the exhibit space. Inside lays a collection of some of Dr. Chaudhery’s work throughout his life. The work consists of both photography and paintings done with an array of paints and canvases.
Some of the underlying themes in Dr. Chaudhery’s work unveil after a glance at the exhibit. The influence spending his life in India before he moved to the United States at the age of 19 is clear. Art depicting scenes from Indian culture is seen throughout the Gallery. Vibrant colors paired with the natural light coming through the windows made each painting come to life.
A few of the paintings were done using acrylic on canvas, the texture of the paint is used to make paintings pop-out and give a 3D element to the work. “The body of his work is so voluminous,” said Dr. Sumita Chaudhery when asked about her favorite aspects of his work. “I like that he experimented through different mediums and a vast arena.”
In some paintings the influence of impressionism and cubism can be seen. Mitchell Mims, a student at Marygrove College, selected an untitled piece from the Portrait Series 1 as his favorite. The painting showcased a musician sitting cross-legged playing an Indian instrument.
“You might not be able to see it from afar, but it has a unique color scheme,” said Mitchell.
Mitchell’s brother Marcus Mims, also a student attending Marygrove College, attended the exhibit as well.
“The theme seems to be happier. It’s unique and I can see [Dr. Chaudhery]’s feelings,” said Marcus. A painting using layers of cubism and impressionism was Marcus’s favorite in the gallery. “I like the boats. It seems really hard to do.” The boats in the bay were done with impressionism while the city behind it was done in cubism.
In addition to Chaudhery’s paintings some of his photography work is also on display. All were done in black and white with a focus on light and shading. Most on display were from a series of nude photos he had taken early in his career. Light bounced off the subject bringing attention to a certain area in each photograph while the shading brought depth.
Dr. Chaudhery’s art at the Gallery brought insight into his life. Influences from his childhood in India and his overall love of art can be seen plainly around the exhibit. A visit to the gallery is sure to be a highlight in anybody’s week.
The exhibit is open to the public Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.  Marygrove College is located at 8425 W. McNichols, Detroit, MI 48221. For more information call 313.927.1370.