The India Art Fair is coming in two weeks’ time which brings us the added bonus of Kishore Singh writing about India’s embrace of art up and down the social spectrum:
In a corner of New Delhi, there is a road in Lado Sarai with a number of art galleries. Sharma Aunty and her kitty gang don’t have the confidence to step into these spaces, but the street has livened up the neighbourhood considerably. Residents gawp through the windows. Landlords like giving their shops to art gallery tenants. “They’re intelligent people,” says one. It earns him respect in his community, the same way collectors feel when they buy “serious” art.
Which is why India’s private-sector experiment with hosting a biennale is so important. The 2012-13 debut of the Kochi Muziris Biennale attracted more than its share of needless controversy that soon dissolved as celebrati and aam admi rubbed shoulders to see some amazingly provocative artworks. The fact that the venue was free (almost), that you could walk in, admire, giggle, denounce meant a lot to people who had previously never been exposed to art. And what names on the roster — Vivan Sundaram, Subodh Gupta, Anita Dube, Atul Dodiya, L.N. Tallur, Shilpa Gupta, a few among the Indians — and a host of international talent. Kochi’s walls sprouted graffiti as art, or perhaps vice versa. And as in its first edition, the 2014 biennale will begin in December and stretch till March 2015. The big challenge will be emulating last year’s success; the bigger advantage is having artist Jitish Kallat as its curator.
It’s Raining Art (Business World)