From Fort to a vintage bungalow in Cuffe Parade and finally in the art district of Kala Ghoda -- Gallery 7 which came into existence in the 1970s, has reached where it wanted to, from the start. “It was always our dream to have the gallery in Kala Ghoda. With the Jehangir Art Gallery and the NGMA located a stone’s throw away, there is buzz in the area in terms of the arts scene. The opportunity struck when we came across the property with its 40-feet frontage, double height ceilings and the facade overseeing the main road -- it was the perfect gallery we had envisioned for over three decades,” shares Nichloi Sachdev, the owner of the gallery.
Sachdev also stresses that visibility was a major draw when they were in the midst of finalising the location. “With our great frontage, brass signage, old lamp posts and big black door, anyone passing by will tend to walk in either out of curiosity or on a mission. Either way, the moment someone walks into the gallery there will be exposure to the space, to the artists we handle and to Indian art on a whole,” he elaborates.
Explaining the benefits of the new property, Sachdev shares that the ceiling height which is over 30-feet will work in favour of artists who wish to showcase large format works in terms of installations, paintings or sculptures. The space receives plenty of natural light, which is critical for collectors to view art in its natural state. He also stated that the pre-constructed structure tends to add to the aesthetic sensibility of the artworks without overpowering it, be it the brick whitewashed walls, cast iron staircase and railing or the wooden beams. The exhibit area also has clean dimensions and uncluttered space, which allows visitors to view the art in an unobtrusive manner.
Restore the splendour
“Instead of refurbishing, we insisted on restoring the premises, maintaining the structure and vibe, which is roughly over eight decades old, and adds a hint of refinement so the gallery becomes a must-go-see on the art aficionado’s itinerary,” he reasons.
The gallery will breathe life into its new space with a showcase of works by some of India’s greatest artists including MF Husain, Ram Kumar, SH Raza, VR Gaitonde and Tyeb Mehta in an exhibition, titled The Moderns from April 26 onwards.