The struggling within his means has been used as an emblem of the existential authenticity of the modern artist. It has been one of the most enduring bequests of Romanticism to the art of our times. Though still favourably evoked on the level of persona myth, historically the post-Cubist Picasso marked the end of the modern artist as an inarticulate primitive. He replaced struggle with versatility, and style with language. However, most modern artists and critics, western and non-western, captivated by the drama and individualist heroism associated with the struggle, have remained connoisseurs of difficulties, ignoring the works of the new Modern, though these works are often wise, witty, eloquent, solemn, playful, rhetorical, complex, simple, cerebral, virtuosic - almost anything but self-promotingly heroic.
Subramanyan is among the few artists who have explored the possibilities of Modern art from this perspective. As an artist he is extraordinarily versatile, and the exploration of art as language is one f the running themes in his writings. He cherishes the facility to work in diverse media, sizes, and techniques over a stylistic conformity to a medium, size, technique, and manner of visualization.