My Article on India Art Summit-2011, New Delhi

 

Wishing all you friends a great 2011. The 1st month of 2011 is almost over and it has been quite eventful. 2 big cultural events took place very near to each other this month and almost overlapping each other, India Art Summit in Delhi and Jaipur Literature Festival in Jaipur. I couldn’t visit the latter but spent 2 quality days at Art Summit.

From the look of it, India Art Summit was big this time. The preview was full of glamour and booze. It seems all of Delhi’s swish set was in full attendance dressed in their impeccable blacks. Artists looked misfits barring a few. But this crowd was welcome, as they came to celebrate those very misfits. I had company of my very good friends, Awdhesh Mishra(Artist, Editor of KalaDirgha from Lucknow) and Dr. Rajesh Vyas (Critic, Writer and Columnist from Jaipur) and Smita Biswas (Artist, Curator & my wife) and together we really enjoyed the show. We praised, cribbed, laughed, criticized, and saw through everything on display. I also met with my dear friend and gallery owner from Chennai, Mayur Shah on last day of the summit and we gorged on some typical Delhi food at Bengali Market other than discussing works at the summit. This summit is turning out to be an annual get together of friends from all cities and I love this aspect.
It was good to see the likes of Picasso & Salvador Dali displayed at an Indian show. Majority of the works displayed in summit were in the new media, sculptures and installations. Some of the works were beyond any definition. We confused one display in Sculpture Park as garbage dump and then realized it was a display. I am calling it a display as I don’t know where to categorize it. Rajesh & Awdhesh also parked their empty coffee cups in the dump. I would leave the criticism to critics but this show was astonishing in terms of selection of works to display. Some of it was bizarre.
The quartet also visited the Anish Kappor’s show at NGMA. Couldn’t shoot anything there as the photography was prohibited, but by Indian standards the show was organized well and also it was good to see the interest among commoners about the show. The hall was full of security men & women trying to stop people from touching the sculptures as all of them were quite inviting to touch. The audio visual was also very interesting which showed the process of making those huge works. The visit to NGMA became more memorable because of an old friend and Art Conservator at National Museum, Mamta Bhatt. She took on herself to guide us through National Museum and NGMA.
To conclude, the visit was very fulfilling. Meeting with friends, singing sessions, long discussions, eating together, what else one can wish? Wonderful 3 days I must say.