Colours of solidarity

Updated: 10 August, 2020 11:20 IST | Dalreen Ramos | Mumbai

Foregoing commission and going digital, a Baroda-based gallery puts the spotlight on eight recent graduates of fine arts in an exhibition

Objects by Vasudha Kapadia. Pic courtesy/The Artists and Gallery Art
Objects by Vasudha Kapadia. Pic courtesy/The Artists and Gallery Art

With a vibrant arts scene, a sense of community prevails in Vadodara. So, when Gallery Ark launched the exhibition Embark three years ago, the agenda was to give back to the community. The annual affair was meant to be a platform for recent graduates of the Faculty of Fine Arts, MSU Baroda to showcase their works. And now, during what appears to be the most challenging period for artists to find a market for their works, they've still managed to put up the third edition of Embark virtually, displaying the works of eight artists from the batch of 2019.

Most works are priced under R10,000. The gallery will also not be taking any commission, so, 100 per cent of the sales proceeds will go to the artists. "We started working on the show a year ago but when the pandemic struck, we thought we might not be able to do it at all. But that didn't sit right with me. I didn't want to let it go," shares gallery director Nupur Dalmia. Thus, the gallery decided to host the exhibition via an online viewing room, and it included pieces by Kavya Kumar Bhatt, Mausham Raj Manglla, Pranay Dutta, Savitha Ravi, Sheshdev Sagria, Ushnish Mukhopadhyay, Vasudha Kapadia and Zarrin-Fatima Shamsi. Some of their works, Dalmia says, were created during the lockdown.

Untitled by Mausham Manglla
Untitled by Mausham Manglla

While the show usually includes at least 10 artists, the curation for Embark III was tighter given the logistical limitations. But Dalmia shares that there's a common thread that binds the practises of the eight graduates together. "They were exploring form and space. And right now, everyone is in their little space. Dutta, for instance, creates dystopian realities, which people will resonate with today. Sagria, on the other hand, looks at form with pieces that depict people in dreamy, mystical outfits. None of these pieces resemble what we had envisioned because in a gallery space, we typically put up larger works ," she says.

In the post-pandemic world, Dalmia looks at a more technologically enhanced future for the exhibition series. "It will be both physical and digital. We hope to launch it with a 3D model we've created for our gallery."

Nupur Dalmia
Nupur Dalmia

Till September 15
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First Published: 10 August, 2020 09:47 IST

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