The India Art Festival is back in Mumbai this week, with a fourth edition featuring works by 500 artists and 33 galleries from across the country.
The four-day event was launched in 2010, to offer a platform to young and independent artists. At India Art Festival, these artists can buy booths and show works directly to the buyer and collector, without waiting years for a slot at a gallery.
RK Laxman and his wife at the India Art Festival 2013 (File photo)
For the buyer, the fair offers space to browse or buy affordable art, with prices of works starting at Rs 6,000. The festival will host talks and panel discussions on art too.
This year, for the first time, foreign artists — one from Switzerland and another from Kazakhstan — will also be take part in the festival.
Kalpana Shah at the India Art Festival 2013 (File photo)
“Our aim is to democratise the art market,” said Rajendra, director of the festival, who goes by only one name. “The response has been very heartening. More than 25,000 people attended last year’s fair, and 80% of the galleries’ works were sold and 40% of the 300 artists’ works.”
Among the independent artists exhibiting works at the fair this time is Mumbai-based Pratod Karnik, 38, a former advertising professional. “It was only in 2009, when I lost vision in the right eye in an accident, that I started painting full time,” he said. “This is one platform where artists can directly meet buyers. This will give me an opportunity to connect with collectors directly.”
Among the galleries participating is Hunnar of Delhi. “We promote Afghani artists. Every year we purchase 200 works from them and sell them to our buyers,” says gallerist Nidhi Gupta. “In an effort to promote their talent, we decided to exhibit their works at this event, to reach out to the Mumbai audience.”
Tina Ambani at the Indian Art Festival 2013 (File photo)
WHAT: India Art Festival
WHERE: Nehru Centre, Dr Annie Besant Road, Worli
WHEN: November 28 to 30, 11 am to 7 pm
ENTRY IS FREE