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Head to this new art gallery in Lower Parel with whimsy aesthetics

Updated on: 03 June,2023 08:29 AM IST  |  Mumbai
Tanishka D’Lyma |

A gallery dedicated to pop art opens its doors for a look at colourful palates and relatable characters

Head to this new art gallery in Lower Parel with whimsy aesthetics

Vijay Shinde at work. Pic/Anurag Ahire

The city recently got a new 3,000-sq-ft pop art gallery, The Designera that made for the ideal mid-week visit. As we approach, we notice how the large glass windows and doors tease passersby with a glimpse of the all-white décor and splashes of colour embodied in pop art events and characters like The Simpsons. When we step in, we’re greeted by in-house artist Vijay Shinde who stands near a large canvas of a comic book-like character covered in Ben-Day dots. This is the live-painting section by the door where Shinde works.

Amrita DeoraAmrita Deora

Founder Amrita Deora walks us through Juxtaposition, the inaugural exhibition. “The show captures the contrasting themes, subjects and mediums of the works, as well as what the gallery aims to do with its unique aesthetic of fun and whimsy,” Deora explains that while we look at an acrylic diptych series by artist Amara De Tori, a rendition of Vincent Van Gogh’s sunflowers splashed with the tomato soup from Andy Warhol’s Campbell painting that a Minion accidentally spilled. “This series hopes to raise questions on the line between activism and vandalism and the value of controversy for an art piece,” she adds. An artrepreneur, Deora found herself leaning towards pop art for the gallery’s online platform. Noticing a gap in the Indian market for a space dedicated to this genre, she began planning a physical space for The Designera before the pandemic. “Art can seem inaccessible, but pop art bridges the gap between people and work,” she reasons, adding about the genre’s rising popularity and the need for space. “As a younger demographic of art collectors emerges, we see a significant shift in their aesthetic towards ‘cooler’ and more fun pieces.” Artworks range from light-hearted to thought-provoking but every piece is fun and vibrant. Like The Glitch of Venus that showcases a Windows error box covering The Birth of Venus and comments on censorship in art; or two great detectives — Sherlock Holmes and Pink Panther — in one frame titled Pinks Paws on Baker Street. The gallery also explores augmented reality art and art created using Artificial Intelligence. This includes a painted version of an AI-generated work of The Simpsons in a museum.

Soup, Spills and Sunflowers by  Amara De ToriSoup, Spills and Sunflowers by Amara De Tori

New exhibitions are expected every four to six weeks with the next one, Zeitgeist, scheduled to launch next month. Before we leave, we ask Deora what she hopes the viewers take from the space. Delight, she answers. 

A peek into the vibrant gallery spaceA peek into the vibrant gallery space

ON Monday to Saturday, 11 am to 10 pm; Sunday, 12 pm to 9 pm  
AT One Lodha Place, Upper Worli, Parel.

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