Seven years on, the annual Colours Of Life exhibit, which raises money for the welfare of cancer patients, is still going strong. This time, the exhibition-cum-sale will feature artworks by 139 contributors, a mix of upcoming as well as leading artists of the country.
“The artists have been forthcoming. The show would not have been possible without their generosity,” says Piali Syam, director, special projects, Cancer Patients Aid Association (CPAA). “Everyone from Akbar Padamsee, Samir Mondal to Satish Gujral and even lesser-known artists have supported us. They have even paid visits to our rehabilitation centers to see the work we do,” she adds. For Syam, the exhibit is driven by her passion for art, which was earlier put on hold due to her husband’s frequent job relocations. And as the curator, she has invested six months in selecting the works. “Every year, I start off in January to prepare for the show in June. I travel a lot, usually catching one exhibit per day,” she smiles.
In the past few years, Syam’s attention has been drawn towards rookies on the art circuit, whose works are good, but almost always undervalued. “Over the past couple of years, the focus has only been on selecting good work. With the economy slowing down, people have started showing interest in reasonably-priced works, which can turn out to be good investments. A lot of first-time buyers are coming in, so the prices are under control,” she explains, adding, “One can buy a painting for anything between Rs 7,000 to Rs 18-19 lakhs. And because it’s for an NGO, they even get a tax rebate.”
Akbar Padamsee, Arzan Khambatta, Ajay De, Jehangir Sabavala, Jayasri Burman, Lalitha Lajmi, Samir Mondal, Satish Gujral, Laxman Sreshta, Jagannath Paul
Colours of Life is on display at Cymroza Art Gallery, Bhulabhai Desai Road till July 2.