'I never set out to become a collector'

Published: 07 August, 2011 09:17 IST | Lhendup G Bhutia |

As Harmony Art Foundation launches its latest exhibition, founder Tina Ambani speaks about how she was drawn towards art

As Harmony Art Foundation launches its latest exhibition, founder Tina Ambani speaks about how she was drawn towards art

Why focus on the miniature?
The exquisite detail and vivid renderingof the miniature has always captivated me. Two years ago, following the global recession and the trauma of 26/11, we decided to focus on the richness of our own cultural heritage and draw strength from it. Thus, we held a show featuring miniature paintings as a legacy. With Fabular Bodies: New Narratives in the Art of the Miniature (current exhibition), we take a step forward to celebrate the miniature as an inspiration for contemporary creative inquiry.

An artwork by Chintan Upadhyay at the exhibition

What can we expect at the show?
We are featuring 24 skilled artists who have adapted a tradition close to their hearts and modernised it according to their own perceptions to make statements about the world we live in. Using diverse media like drawing, painting, sculpture and even comics/computer-generated storyboards, they have tackled themes ranging from alienation and dislocation to politics of religion and gender, poverty and the effects of 'modernisation'.

Can you describe your interest in art?
Being a performing artist from a young age, I felt an affinity to creativity in all forms. I never set out consciously to become a 'collector' -- it was a natural journey. When I was struggling to make my own mark as an artiste in the late 1970s, I began to understand the creative process. My passion for art began to take root instinctively. That was also the time I bought my first work of art. It was an abstract study of a woman with a red vermillion mark on her forehead. I was enthralled and gradually began to seek every opportunity to learn more about art.

How has Harmony Art Foundation helped the art scene in India?
Today, everyone speaks about the potential of Indian art -- we recognised this potential a long time ago and realised that there was a need to evoke greater public interest in art. Over the past 16 years, Harmony has showcased the work of nearly 1,600 artists and attracted over half-a-million visitors.
At:  August 6 - 14, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, 159/61 MG Road.
Call: 2844484

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