Mega art-traction

The Asian Age.  | Suridhi Sharma

Life, Art

The ongoing India Art Festival is a mega affair with the participation of 35 art galleries and 400 artists from six countries and 25 cities.

Art work by Nawal Kishore

A beautiful synergy of art unfolded as artists from across the country, and some international ones too, came together for the India Art Festival (IAF) in the city. A total of 35 art galleries, 400 associated artists from six countries and 25 cities are participating in the Delhi chapter this year. Rural and urban artists from Jamnagar, Tripura, Chennai, Hyderabad, Lucknow, Nagpur, Kolkata, Pune, Bengaluru and Mumbai are participating too. “It is a type of democratisation process where we put together artists from different backgrounds to enjoy the limelight,” shares Rajendra, founder and manager of India Art Festival.

Art work by Thota Vaikuntam

Minister of youth affairs and sports Vijay Goel, sculpturist Ram Sutar, artist Ram Sutar, artist D.P. Sibbal and Additional Director General, Doordarshan, Deepa Chandra inaugurated the second edition of IAF at Thyagaraj Stadium this Thursday.  

Art work by Chandra Bhattacharjee

“In group or solo shows in galleries, there are limitations as far as outreach is concerned. As a single artist how much money can one spend to reach out to the clientele? When a huge number of artists come together in such a way, they obviously get benefited. In solo shows it is difficult to get such a footfall,” shares Rajendra.

Art work by Ramesh Gorjala

After a footfall of 26,000 last year, the art fair is expecting a similar turnout this year. “Financially it is much easier and flexible. The specialty of our art fair is that it is not a very costly affair. Artists in India are struggling. I am not talking about well established artists, but the upcoming and lesser known artists. They find it very tough to spend huge amounts of money. But here they get their works published in a catalog, and get a ready-made platform and good advertising. It is sort of a synergy of artists. As finally it is all the artists who generate funds to make this festival possible,” explains Rajendra.

Art work by Sujata Achrekar

Talking about the niche and limited number of art enthusiasts and patrons, Rajendra added, “If you organise an art fair in South Delhi, it is successful; otherwise it struggles. Same happens in Mumbai as well. It has to be in South Mumbai. There are space constraints as well and bigger venues like Pragati Maidan charge big money. Sponsors these days are always looking at what they will get in return, which is very difficult in art.”

Art work by Niren Sengupta

Despite such constraints, participating artists are very happy with the exposure they are getting at this festival. Diya Kotak from Jamnagar who is exhibiting her works at IAF says, “I visited the Mumbai chapter and got to know that even I could participate in this festival. I think it is a great opportunity.”

Jatin Das inaugurating the India Art Festival

Artist Hena Bawa from Mumbai, who is also exhibiting at IAF for the first time, says, “It is good that there are so many artworks on display here. This helps artists know what other people are doing and get inspired. There is so much diversity in art. You get to expand your knowledge too.”

Praising the festival P. Gnana from Gnani Arts Singapore said, “At a gallery you get a specific clientele, but here you get a wide range of exposure. Art collectors also get to know the international art scene.”