The next time you are on your way to Connaught Place through Parliament Street, a 13-foot marble structure will greet you on the right, on the Palika Kendra campus greens.
In a bid to promote urban art in the Capital, the New Delhi Municipal Council (NDMC) recently put up a sculpture created by city-based artiste Neeraj Gupta. “This initiative has been started on an experimental basis. Artistes, who want to install their creations, will be given space. In Rome, each street has a specimen of urban art. Why should Delhi lag?” an NDMC official said.
However, the municipal council has not paid a penny for it. “Either the artist does it with his own money or gets a sponsor. It was quite clear that we will not fund it,” he said, adding that the NDMC has ample funds to support urban art but it won’t be touched as of now.
In June last year, the council had given a newspaper advertisement inviting artists interested in putting up their creations. “Neeraj Gupta, who has created this magnificent piece of art, was one of the applicants,” OP Mishra, director (projects/ IT/ building enforcement), NDMC, said.
According to him, if public feedback is positive, all roundabouts and other chunks of green spaces under the council’s jurisdiction might act as a palette for the artistes.
However, it is not feasible for artists’ to create wonders with money out of their own pockets. “The raw marble block I used costs more than R14 lakh. It took seven months for me to complete it. Either the municipal council will pay me later or will allow sponsorship,” said Gupta, who feels his piece, Resurgence, tells the tale of Delhi’s journey as a city.