Friday, April 11, 2014

Chetnaa Verma announced as the winner of the Glenfiddich Emerging Artist of the Year, 2014 Award

New Delhi, April 5, 2014: In an exclusive grand-finale held at Gallery Nature Morte, The Oberoi, Gurgaon, Glenfiddich and announced Chetnaa Verma as the winner of the third edition of “Emerging Artist of the Year, 2014 Award”. In a proud moment for the country, Chetnaa Verma emerges as the winner despite a tough competition from artists all over India. Chetnaa presented outstanding artwork titled – “Crossword of Diagonals” and “On Parallel Ground”, for her much deserving win. The core of her practice in art focuses on the series of geometrics and the lines guided by the urban metroscape. Tauseef Khan of Delhi and Shrimanti Saha of Baroda were declared as the first and second runner-up at the finale event. The evening saw the presence of the celebrated jury members and iconic artists from the country coming together for this coveted award ceremony to show their support to the emerging talent.

 Recognized as the country’s biggest art award, the award is brought together by, India's most reputed online art gallery dedicated to supporting and nurturing young contemporary artists in partnership with Glenfiddich, the world’s most awarded single malt Scotch whisky. Chetnaa will be the artist representing India in 2014 at the globally acclaimed Glenfiddich Artists in Residence (AiR), collaborating with other celebrated international artists, and get an opportunity to live and work at The Glenfiddich Distillery in Scotland for 3 months. The artist received an award of total value INR 10, 00,000 which comprises INR 1, 00,000 as cash reward, three months residency in Scotland with a monthly stipend, materials allowance, travel, accommodation and finally, a solo show at Art District XIII in 2014.

 Over 2,500 works by 655 artists were included for this year’s contest, out of which five finalists were shortlisted by a 10 member jury, comprising leading artists, curators and collectors. All five finalists showcased their works at an exclusive preview, ‘Five for the Future’ held at Gallery Nature Morte, The Oberoi, Gurgaon on 4th April, 2014. Chetnaa’s artwork will be on view until the 30th of April 2014.  Currently in its 13th year, AiR this year will welcome 10 artists from across the globe, the largest group ever, from India, China, Taiwan, Korea, Canada, North America, Mexico, Chile, Spain and the UK. 

Mr. Kapil Chopra, President, The Oberoi Group & Mentor,, said, “We are delighted to host the third edition of the Emerging Artist of the Year award. This is the most important initiative for the growth of Indian contemporary art. The award not only seeks out the next generation of artists but also nurtures and supports emerging talent. The Oberoi Group believes in showcasing the best of Indian art, culture, design and hospitality to the world and this partnership reiterates our commitments towards the goal.”
Rajiv Bhatia, Director, William Grant & Sons, India, said, “In the pioneering spirit of our founders, which serves as the cornerstone of our core values – Glenfiddich has been an initiator and supporter of art programmes across the world. Our globally recognized forum – Artists in Residence (AiR), launched in 2002, provides a solid platform for incipient artists from around the world to showcase their talent and to gain international recognition. Since the launch in India in 2012, the programme has received an enthusiastic response from artists across the country.
Andy Fairgrieve, AiR Co-ordinator, William Grant & Sons Distillers Ltd, commented,Each year, the pioneering Glenfiddich Artists in Residence programme welcomes a number of artists from all over the world to take up a three-month residency at The Glenfiddich Distillery. In 2012, with the exclusive launch of the Emerging Artist of the Year award in India, Glenfiddich took yet another pioneering step in actively supporting young artists in India. We are overwhelmed to see that with the third edition, the award has established itself as one of the country’s leading art competitions. Glenfiddich is the true pioneer of single malt Scotch whisky category and is enjoyed by more people around the world than any other single malt Scotch whisky.  The essence of our association with lies in the fact that both as well the overall ethos of Glenfiddich celebrate the shared passion for art. We look forward to Chetnaa’s participation in the AiR programme and wish her the best in his journey to success.”
In accepting the honor, Chetnaa Verma said, “I am extremely happy and honoured to win Emerging Artist of the Year Award 2014. Winning this prestigious award has always been a dream, which has now come true for me. I would like to thank my family and friends for all their support which have made these accolades possible for me."
Last year’s winner of the ‘Emerging Artist of the Year’ was Yuvan Bothysathuvar from Chennai, India. He participated in Glenfiddich’s 12th annual Artists in Residence programme in 2013 at The Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, along with seven other artists from across the globe.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Glenfiddich announces the five finalists for the Glenfiddich “Emerging Artist of the Year, 2014 Award”

New Delhi, March 26, 2014: The Glenfiddich “Emerging Artist of the Year”, the biggest art award in India has announced the five finalists of its third edition. It is a proud moment for the capital city, Tauseef Khan has been named in the top 5. He made it to this elite list despite very tough competition from artists all over India. Tauseef presented outstanding artwork titled – “Burj reflection”, “Coliseum Reflection”, for his deserving selection. His paintings are about how we view history through the prism of today, how it is constantly shifting and changing according to our contemporary perspectives. The award is brought together by Glenfiddich, the world’s most awarded single malt Scotch whisky in partnership with, India's most reputed online art gallery dedicated to supporting and nurturing young contemporary artists.

The five shortlisted artists chosen from Baroda, Chennai and New Delhi will present a group show ‘Five for the Future’ at Gallery Nature Morte, The Oberoi, Gurgaon on April 4, 2014. Chosen by a distinguished jury, one of them will be declared the winner of the coveted award. The award has a total value of INR 10,00,000 – it includes INR 1,00,000 cash, three months residency in Scotland with a monthly stipend, materials allowance, travel, accommodation, and culminates with a solo show at Nature Morte in 2014.

Over 2,500 works by 655 artists were included for this year’s contest, were reviewed by a 10-member jury, comprising leading artists, curators and collectors. After rigorous rounds of evaluation and discussions, the jury members have shortlisted on these five finalists.

The five finalists for the “Emerging Artist of the Year”, 2014 Award are:
1. Tauseef Khan - New Delhi (above)
2. Sirivella Pragathikumar - Baroda (Vadodra)
3. Shrimanti Saha - Baroda (Vadodra)
4. Ravishankar - Chennai
5. Chetnaa Verma- Noida

Shrimanti Saha’s work derive a lot from the manipulation of historical narratives and juxtapose them with certain aspects from biology, geography and other disciplines, while Sirivella Pragathikumar’s work is based on satirical and comical description of human nature. Ravishankar’s entry showcases various memories of his childhood that has seed deep inside him; he uses complex techniques of brilliant usage of pen and Ink on paper. Chetnaa Verma’s work titled Crossword of Diagonals” and “On Parallel Ground” showcases series of geometrics and the lines guided by the urban metroscape, while Tauseef Khan work is focuses on how we perceive the world and our past through the prism of today.

Since its launch in India in 2012, Glenfiddich Artists in Residence (AiR) programme has received an enthusiastic response from artists across the country. The winner gets to represent India for 2014 at the globally acclaimed programme which gives the participant a chance to collaborate with other celebrated international artists, and the opportunity to live and work at The Glenfiddich Distillery in Scotland. A unique feature of Glenfiddich’s Artists in Residence programme is the open brief that allows each artist the freedom to explore and be inspired by the people, heritage and stunning surroundings of the distillery, without prescription on the work they create. Currently in its 13th year, AiR this year will welcome 10 artists from across the globe, the largest group ever, from India, China, Taiwan, Korea, Canada, North America, Mexico, Chile, Spain and the UK.

Rajiv Bhatia, Director, William Grant & Sons, India, said, Since the launch of its globally recognized forum - Artists in Residence (AiR) – in 2002, Glenfiddich has been an initiator and supporter of art programmes across the world. In 2012, with the exclusive launch of the Emerging Artist of the Year award in India, Glenfiddich took a pioneering step in actively supporting young artists in the country. India has been an active participant in this program over the past five years. This year again we have had an exceptional response to the competition, and are delighted to announce the five finalists shortlisted for 2014 edition of Emerging Artist of the Year award. It is indeed heartening to see the increased participation in the awards from artists all over India. Having a finalist from the city of Delhi is a testament to the growing popularity of these awards amongst emerging artists in India.
On hearing the announcement Tauseef Khan said “I am extremely happy and honored at being selected as one of the five finalists for the Glenfiddich Emerging Artist of the Year Award. This is a very good platform for any budding artist and being a part of this, was a dream come true for me. I am eagerly looking forward to attending the finale event at the very famous Nature Morte Gallery, and hope to make the city of Delhi proud by winning this prestigious award.”
This is the third edition of the award and since its inception in 2012, and over 3,500 works by more than 1000 artists have been submitted to the Emerging Artist of the Year Award thus far.  Seeking the very best in national contemporary art, the award has established itself as one of the country’s leading art competitions. Last year’s winner, Yuvan Bothysathuvar, participated in Glenfiddich’s 12th annual Artists in Residence programme in 2013 at The Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, along with seven other artists from across the globe.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Maharashtra State Fine Arts honours AA Raiba

The Fine Arts Department of the State of Maharashtra will honour the painter Abdul Aziz Raiba with a Lifetime Achievement Award towards his services to the cause of art.
 The Chief Guest Honourable Minister Shri Rajesh Tope will present on behalf of the state of Maharashtra and the Fine Arts Department a prize honouring the senior artist from Bombay.
 5.30pm | Jehangir Art Gallery, 161 Kalaghoda, Bombay 400001
 Accompanying exhibition:
The Maharashtra State Art Exhibition 2013-2014
5-11 March, 2014 | Timings: 11am-7pm
AC Third Gallery, Jehangir Art Gallery
 Marathi text: Shriram Khadilkar
Curated by: Prof. Shashikant Kakade & Prof. Anant Nikam, Sir JJ School of Art; Zasha Colah and Sumesh Sharma, Clark House Initiative.
 Letter to the Leydens, possibly by AA Raiba in the name of his wife Aisha.
Courtesy Shireen Gandhy and Clark House Initiative.

Caption reads: The studio without wall of an artist who in imagination reshapes the visual world upon a simple geometrical foundation of lineal supports. This fallen building perished his two decades work of art to dust. During these frequent occasion if twice in artist’s life time has brought untold sorrow. Raiba seemed unable to look back into the faces of those injured and dead, being the most tragic event he had ever seen. His eyes dimmed with total compassion and he buckled as though he himself is buried alive — from the artist’s wife who shares Raiba’s life…who dedicated hers to him.  
 Some months ago, an extraordinary letter was shared with Clark House by Shireen Gandhy, the director of Chemould Gallery, from the archive of her parents, Khorshed and Kekoo Gandhy. The letter relates a period of psychological trauma, having witnessed the loss of lives of his neighbours, the narrow empty-handed escape from the collapsing building, and the loss of his studio containing at least two decades of work. Raiba might not have been able to write of this event in his own voice, and so chooses to write as his wife, Aisha. A note in Khorshed Gandhy's handwriting, tells us she believes this to be Raiba, writing in the name of his wife. In his wife's voice, he can write with full emotion. Raiba's adoption of alternate identities was a part of him somehow, and has been a way to transcend himself - as he writes in this extraordinarily worded caption to a photograph of himself pasted within a drawing of his old studio: 'an artist who in imagination reshapes the visual world'. Shifts in identity have been a playful and meaningful part of his life as an artist. In Kashmir he took up a Muslim identity, in the South of India, a Hindu one. Here in this grieving letter, that of his wife. Raiba was also a poet, writing and translating Urdu poetry. The adoption of a persona, may come from this heritage, but it is also what makes him most vitally of our own present. His acts of transcendence reveal the absurdity of fixed identities of religion and gender - and what could be more radical and urgent than this in our times? - Zasha Colah
Abdul Aziz Raiba
Text: Sumesh Sharma, 2013

Born in 1922, AA Raiba has had a career that spans six decades. His works form part of prominent collections in India and abroad. Most of his life was spent in a single-room tenement on Temkar street, a locality of Konkani Muslims in central Bombay. In this room that housed him, his wife and his three children, the canvases on exhibit were made from jute mixtures, and painted. Flat figures are bordered by thick black lines initially drawn in charcoal, is a kind of cloisonnism.
 Having been trained in the revivalist Bombay School that often referenced visual vocabulary from Indian miniature traditions and influenced by the modernisms exposed to him by Charles Gerard, Raiba charted a path that was independent from the Bombay School and the Progressive Artists Group. His early miniatures were published by the Illustrated Weekly of India for their covers. Encouraged by exiled artist and art critic Walter Langhammer, he spent three years in Kashmir. He documented the folk motifs seen in the temples of Jammu and the Pahari kingdoms of Himachal Pradesh. Kashmir gave him an excellent understanding of perspective while executing landscapes. Documenting renditions of humans and animals within the Pahari miniature paintings provided him with a visual cache that would often reappear in his works. Soon after returning to Bombay, Raiba abandoned the use of watercolour, and began working with oil on a prepared canvas made of jute. Here he began placing these folk motifs derived from Pahari miniatures into cubist perspectives narrating erotic tales of love.
 In the early months of 1943, Abdul Aziz Raiba began his association with the Sir JJ School of Art after being offered a scholarship by the dean Charles Gerard. He graduated with a Diploma in Fine Arts in 1946, and was appointed a Fellow to the painting department for a year in 1947. He returned to his alma mater in 1980 enrolling himself for an evening hobby course in Graphic Print Making at the Print-Making Studio while accompanying his senior who was seeking admission at the Faculty of Architecture.
 Professor Prabhakar Kolte, who was a young lecturer at JJ while Raiba was at the printmaking studio recounts memories of him sitting in the lawns that surround the faculty while he worked on linoleum plates (linocuts). Though by then Raiba had found success and was considered a senior, Kolte found him an affable man who was friendly with students often showing them his charcoal sketches of nature and architectural studies he had done while on the lawns across from the Victoria Terminus, Crawford Market and the Neo-Gothic School of Art building designed by George Twigge Molecey. Architecture often found resonance in Raiba's practices.
 Intrigued by a book he found at the JN Petit Public Library at Fort, on Portuguese Bombay, Raiba began researching on visual residues of Portuguese monuments destroyed by the British in an attempt to purge the Portuguese from the Western Coast and desecrated in modern times by a rising population that began to spread from the islands of Bombay across the creek into Vasai displacing the East Indian Christians who inhabited the fishing villages near the Portuguese forts of Vasai,  Naigaon and Sopara. This research of interesting mythical accounts from the city were illustrated by Raiba in his show 'Bombay XVIII Century' in 1975, of a Dargah (mausoleum of a Muslim Saint) of the Siddis - descendants of Abyssinian slaves.
 Being a Konkani Muslim from the coast of Maharashtra, Raiba's interest in the city's history was natural. Though he came from a family that had adapted Urdu as their primary language among themselves having published Bombay's first Urdu newspaper, the Raibas married only into Konkani families from towns that dotted the coast around Bombay and they worked traditionally at the city's port authority. The Konkani's were one of India's earliest Muslim communities descendants of Arab sailors who had settled on the coast and converts from Hindu families who often retained their Hindu family names. They were ruled by an Abyssinian Dynasty of Murud and Janjira that often waged maritime wars with the Marathas, British and the Portuguese for control over cities of Bombay, Bassein, Sopara and Chaul. In many villages inhabited by the Konkani Muslims, such as Korlai south of Bombay, Christian communities converted by the Portuguese later called East Indians by the British, and till now speak a Portuguese creole. In the period preceding this exhibition Raiba was forced out of his home in Temkar street, the Konkani Muslim locality near the JJ School due to the collapse of the building he lived in and dire financial constraints that led to his migration to Vasai, now a suburb of Bombay, a city it preceded in history.
 In the years after JJ Raiba lived in Kashmir, and the Pahari Hills of North India, developing his study of perspective in landscape and collecting motifs and visual techniques from the miniature painters there. He developed a habit of maintaining a record of exercise books with sketches of his studies and folk motifs as reference material, a practice he continues today. Collected through various research trips he made around India, his works that illustrate a mythical history of Bombay, reference a lot of material he collected from his travels to Kerala and much later his last ever such trip to Goa. Though the Bassein Fort in Vasai returned often in his works, so did shark-fishing, rice terraces and the temple near the tank often seen on the Konkan coast. 
 Kolte remembers visiting his exhibitions at the historic Taj Art Gallery, in the Taj Mahal Hotel, a venue much used by the modernists. On one such visit he was surprised at Raiba's use of jute and a mixture of clay and glue as his canvas. Raiba then told him that it was imperative of an artist to battle financial constraints with creativity and use any medium to maintain one's practice, citing an example of using cow dung within the miniature tradition of Indian painting. Raiba until now has grappled with financial constraints. Sakina Mehta, recounts her memory of Raiba who was a good friend of her husband the painter Tyeb Mehta. Tyeb would often visit Raiba's home where his mother would feed them with rice bloated with Alum so it could fill their stomachs. Raiba began using discarded pieces of glass after he saw glass paintings in Chor Bazaar, using many layers of glass, painting them and placing them one over other to create deeper perspectives depicting portraits of Muslim and Marathi couples much akin to the mica paintings of the Company Painting School. For a mural he was commissioned to make at the entrance of the Gokuldas Tejpal Concert Hall in Bombay he painted tiles with musical instruments firing them in a vitrum studio, a technique taught to him by Rudy Von Leyden. His experimentation of medium might have been urged by his dire financial constraints, it may have arisen from his training as a miniaturist from the revivalist Bombay School where the students were required to make the surfaces of their paintings called 'Vasli' in Urdu. Presently in his studio that faces a miniature garden in the suburb of Nala Sopara, Raiba endlessly makes sketches on Khadi or handmade made cotton paper, preferring its coarseness for its affinity to jute.  
 Though considered a master by many of his contemporaries, and in spite of receiving excellent critical reviews of his exhibitions, he fell into obscurity as he never saw equal success commercially as the other modernists of his time. Secondly he would prepare extremely researched exhibitions that would study a subject in detail. Exhibitions would be based on themes such as the History of Bombay, Kashmir: Miniature to Monumentalism, Metaphysical Paintings, the Baramasa of Keshavdas, Mirza Ghalib and Islamic Calligraphy. He would design invites in innovative shapes and Moderist typography, and being a poet himself incorporated translations of Allama Iqbal and stylistic elements of Islamic calligraphy. In one of his last self-designed invitations, he apologises for the lack of a large body of works. His inability to create a substantial body of work, and self-curated shows, led him into retirement from actively exhibiting in the 1990s. Over the last decade having been cheated by unscrupulous dealers and lacking motivation to engage with the art market, he withrew from public view. 
 Raiba believes his practice to be unfinished even today.

Photo Exhibition by Karen Knorr/Tasveer from 10th to 19th March 2014 at Piramal Gallery

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Launching Video Art at the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum curated by Gayatri Sinha

Title: Video Art at the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum
Time: Saturdays, 4 30 to 5 30 pm, The Education Centre, The Museum Plaza
The Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum is pleased to present Video Art at the Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, curated by Gayatri Sinha/Critical Collective. 
 The programme showcases a series of compilations of the works of artists whose practice involves video and multi-media.  The viewing will run over a 12 month period in monthly editions. The first edition, screened in March, examines 6 artists/groups whose works explore the conflicted issue of change and urbanism.
 In this feature, urbanism, societal change and the tropes of scientific development are investigated to interrogate the impact of globalism. While the work, 'The Panic City' by Gigi Scaria induces vertigo, the interrogation of colonial processes in Raqs Media’s 'Surface' mark the dislocations of progress.  Baiju Parthan, Gigi Scaria and Sheba Chhachhi create evocations around the passage of time and the changes it effects.
 Gayatri Sinha and The Critical Collective:
Gayatri Sinha is an art critic and curator based in New Delhi. Her primary areas of interest are around the issues of gender and iconography, media, economics and social history. As a curator her work has been in the domains of contemporary art, photography and lens based work. She is the founder director of Critical Collective which is a forum for thinking on conceptual frames within art history and practice in contemporary India.
 Note on the Museum Plaza and Education Centre:
 In December 2012, the Museum opened a unique new cultural hub called the Museum Plaza which offers people a much needed green and programme rich public recreation space. The Museum has restored and adapted old spaces to accommodate new exhibition galleries called SPS 1 and 2, a large open area for the performing arts as well as public sculpture, a Museum CafĂ©, a Museum Shop, an Experimental Gallery, and an Education Centre.
 A dilapidated cottage that served as a storage room has been painstakingly restored to function as the Museum’s Education Centre. The building has been completely transformed internally into an intimate, contemporary space. An exclusive education programme has been planned including film screenings, lectures, seminars, audio-visual interactions and special events.

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Noted painter Prokash Karmakar dead

Kolkata, Feb 25: Noted painter Prokash Karmakar, best known for his landscapes and nudes, died on Monday evening, following age-related illness, family sources said. He was 81. Many of his works are part of the permanent collections of leading museums like the National Gallery of Modern Art, and Lalit Kala Akademi in Delhi, besides the Academy of Fine Arts here. Karmakar's nudes and landscapes, done in vibrant colours with bold lines, have been acclaimed by art connoisseurs for long. He also painted shades of rural and urban lives, and his perceptions of nature. Born in 1933, he was inspired by the works of Picasso and other masters of the 19th century Impressionism movement.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

96% of exhibitors report strong sales at 6th edition of India Art Fair – new confidence in the contemporary market

February 3, 2014 – The sixth edition of India Art Fair, India’s premier fair for modern and contemporary art, concluded yesterday after a buoyant four day run at the NSIC Exhibition Centre in New Delhi.
With 96% of exhibitors reporting good sales, and a number of exhibitors selling out entirely, the fair reinforced the recent renewed sense of energy and market confidence that has been seen and felt across the Indian art community. Roshini Vadehra, Director of Vadehra Art Gallery commented “it has been a great start to 2014.  We have been participating in India Art Fair since its inception, and this has been one of the best years yet for our modern and contemporary sales”.
A noticeable trend for returning international galleries was an increased level of engagement from fair visitors, as exhibitors enjoyed the attentions of a more confident art-loving public with a closer appreciation and understanding of the gallery brand and exhibiting artists. Lorenzo Fiaschi, Galleria Continua (San Gimignano / Beijing / Le Moulin), commented: “After three years our relationship with art lovers in India is growing deeper and deeper.  For us this has been the best edition yet – we look forward to coming back next year.” 
With 12 new galleries from cities including Paris, Lisbon, Cologne, Barcelona, Madrid, Istanbul, Tel Aviv and Karachi, the fair was pleased to report sales for 90% of all first-time exhibitors, with a number of galleries selling out entirely. Mark Hachem, Director of Mark Hachem Gallery said “We have had a very good fair.  We’ve made great contacts, one institution has bought pieces.  We have made sales to both Indian and expat collectors”
India Art Fair played host to a range collectors, both old and new, from around the world. Indian collectors accounted for a significant percentage of the sales, whether non-residential Indians living abroad, or younger new collectors from tier-two cities and towns across the country. Renowned collector Rajiv Savara said “This year the quality of galleries and their offerings is much improved, and in some cases, extraordinary.  The footfall is much better too”. Collector and co-partner in Select City Walk Arjun Sharma who purchased close a dozen works said: “Qualitatively this year’s fair has surpassed my expectations.  There is a very fine mix of contemporary, modern and master works.  The price points are more attractive.  The fair has become a significant part of everyone’s calendars - so much so that I have made a point of returning from an overseas business trip early to catch the opening night”
Probably the single biggest buyer of the 2014 edition of India Art Fair was Kiran Nadar, founder and director of the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art, said: “All the galleries seemed very positive and said they had done much better compared to all the previous years gone by, which is very heartening for the market. The fair was very well organized and comfortable to navigate. The speakers forum line up was world class with great educational initiatives which is a big break through.”
The KNMA was one of a number of international museums present at the fair, including The Himalayas Art Museum in Shanghai and the Mark Rothko Museum in Latvia. In addition a number of major international museum delegations and representatives attend this years art fair. Chris Dercon, Director of Tate Modern said: “This is my third visit to the India Art Fair, and I make a point of attending as it is important to get an overview of the Indian art scene.  The fair is now bringing independent projects, challenging the homogenous system of the art market.  At the same time more and more institutions are bringing their best thoughts and images in an increasingly professional way to an ever growing wider public”. Also present was the Director of the Delfina Foundation, Aaron Cezar, who said: “I have been coming to India Art Fair for the last three years and have witnessed the transformation of both the fair and the city. India Art Fair provides a point of momentum for the contemporary scene in Delhi, and the fair goes from strength to strength to strength - in the quality of the work and the quality of experience”
The international museum outreach also prompted an encouraging degree of cross-cultural outreach and collaborations supported by several foreign missions in India as an extension of their cultural policy and outreach. With Gallery Chowk (exhibiting for the first time at India Art Fair), the Pakistani High Commissioner to Delhi, Mansoor Ali Kahn, suggested a much bigger India-Pakistan initiative at the art fair for 2015 and said “IWe need to develop an institutional framework to increase cultural collaborations through art with Pakistan and India to better facilitate the art exchange.  We should start with a single exhibition of Pakistani art in India. We have to come out of the old mindset.  Art can take a lead in that”
Acting in this way as a conduit for developing international cultural relations, India Art Fair also marked the first private-sector led Indo-Chinese cultural exchange program coordinated by ‘Made in China’ Chairman Philip Dodd. A delegation of Chinese collectors and gallery and museum owners visited the fair to meet their Indian counterparts and to discuss cross-promotional cultural exchange, a dialogue that will continue when an Indian delegation goes to Shanghai and Beijing later this year. Budi Tek the famous Indonesian-Chinese entrepreneur, philanthropist, collector and museum owner said “We see something is moving so rapidly in the art world in India. I think we should seriously consider collecting Indian art work, and we look forward to returning”. Following the delegation’s visit it is highly likely that Indian art will find it’s way into major Chinese museums later this year.
With a strong series of talks and debates at the 2014 Speakers’ Forum, and with a number of curated walk, school groups and specialist workshops, India Art Fair beyond it’s commercial role as a trade fair for art, has proved itself to be major catalyst for meaningful education and outreach for a larger community in India and abroad.  Plans are already being laid for India Art Fair 2015 with the announcement that renowned curator and art critic Girish Shahane will join the art fair organisers as Artistic Director of the fair.
Neha Kirpal, Founder and Director of India Art Fair said: “Sandy Angus and I are very pleased to have had a successful art fair as we recognize the importance of our role in the Indian context as market builders and a conduit for change, which we are working towards through a progressive ongoing efforts for international and domestic outreach and education. Since the inception of the art fair to date we’ve seen the transformation of the art fair, the exhibiting artists and galleries rising to a truly world class standard with an global appeal, and the development of an entire industry around the arts, fueling tremendous possibilities for both business and culture.”

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

India Art Fair Speakers’ Forum 2014

India Art Fair Speakers’ Forum 2014 INDIA ART FAIRSPEAKERS’ FORUM 2014
Friday, January, 31 - Sunday, February 2
NSIC Exhibition Grounds, Okhla

Entry is free for visitors to the art fair on a first come, first serve basis only

The Public and its Art

In its sixth edition the Speakers’ Forum at the India Art Fair expands further on the core constituency of art, the public. In previous editions, the Forum has drawn on Asia’s expanding role, institutions and a critique of the post colonial, market dynamics and changing aesthetic values.

The umbrella subject of discussion for the sixth edition of the Speakers’ Forum is The Public and its Art. Drawing us out of the narrow reading of locations, borders and boundaries, nations and community, the purpose is to understand how the very definition of the public is changing before our eyes. The reading of the public has in the last decade been radically transformed. When there is an aggregate of people they may mark a visible public much like the agora of ancient Greece; however, there are publics which are not visible, who defy the idea of an aggregate, who work across different latitudes and political systems. Yet through chosen networks of mobility, they may form national or global opinion, effect policy, topple governments, guide diplomacy, and signal mass taste.

As the emphasis shifts to networks rather than communities, space becomes a curatorium, affecting our understanding of the public and its art. More than ever before, through its vocal response, physical participation, monetary support and on occasion, its hand of destruction, the public confers on art, archives and material history the reading of our future but also of our past.

In keeping with the spirit of the subject, the Speakers’ Forum 2014 has invited thinkers who have transformed the way art is received. It has sought to register shifts in Europe and the US as they grapple with an economic slowdown, as well as the new art empires of Asia, which are rising against the backdrop of the unpredictable flux within ancient sites of culture.

Gayatri Sinha / Critical Collective
Convenor, Speakers’ Forum, 2014

To see the complete schedule please visit:

Aicon Gallery @ India Art Fair 2014

Hemraj's Solo Show at India Art Fair 2014

Palette Art Gallery | India Art Fair 2014

Achia Anzi at India Art Fair 2014