New Delhi: Foreign
galleries participating in the India Art Summit for the first time
are "impressed" by the "educated art market" and the large
turnout. Many even brought down the prices of their paintings to
"suit" the Indian tastes.
"This is the first time we are participating in the art summit
here and frankly, before coming here we didn't know what to
expect. But I am very happy to say that the response has been
absolutely great," Christian Dorey of the Arteria gallery from
Montreal, Canada, told IANS at the summit.
The art summit has grown in size over the years. As compared to 54
in the last edition, a total of 84 galleries from 20 countries are
participating in the Jan 21-23
third edition at Pragati Maidan here.
The number of foreign galleries participating has gone up from 17
in the last edition to 34 this time.
"Because we didn't know what to expect or what kind of art work
Indians would like, we brought a variety of work. So you have a
few classical paintings, pop art, prints and others. What I was
sure of though is that our art work should be accessible and
affordable to all, so we brought down the prices," said Dorey, who
is an artist himself.
For instance, a painting priced at Rs.73,000 here is priced almost
double elsewhere, like New York. Most other paintings were priced
around Rs.30,000 on. The most expensive piece - a pop art on Elvis
Presley that is already sold - was priced at Rs.90,000.
"Art should be accessible. I am an artist and nothing is more
pleasing than to realise that my work can be taken by as many
people as possible. We have already sold six pieces and many
people said they were pleased with the price range," Dorey said.
An official of the Robert Bowman gallery of UK said that she was
impressed to see a very "art educated" market here.
"Although we do have clients in India, this is the first time we
are participating in the summit. So the aim really is just to
introduce ourselves here and get our work familiar. But we are
very happy with the response and am impressed to see an educated
market," she said.
The Robert Bowman gallery showcased sculptures by various artists.
"There are many students coming and talking to us about the
sculptures and sharing their interpretation about the pieces. One
student had a very interesting mathematical interpretation about a
piece which actually never crossed my mind," the official said.
An interesting art work in the exhibition space of the
Stark+Granit gallery of London was one with an Indian connection -
"Carlo Pasini is a Milan-based artist who does a lot of pop art
and iconic images. This art work titled 'Afterlife' depicts the
face of Gandhi and it's made entirely of pins on board. It's an
iconic image," an official of the Stark+Granit gallery told IANS.
Another interesting art work was that of Francesco de Molfetta.
The piece was that of a blister pack of Prozac, an
anti-depressant, in which one pill was replaced by a miniature
form of a couple, depicting the everyday stress of modern life.
"Our art medium is quite familiar in Europe, but it's new in
India. Therefore work like that of Francesco de Molfetta is
getting much attention here. The level of interest is impressive,"
The curator of Tokyo's Tamura Akio Gallery said: "I am happy with
the response. People are very curious with our work, that of mixed
media in acrylic boxes."
A number of foreign galleries said they were happy to participate
in the summit for the first time and get an idea of India's art
"Our prices are high...2,000 euros (over Rs.120,000) on...so I can
understand that the Indian audience would like to be completely
sure before they buy our work. This is the first time that we are
here so we are just happy to get ourselves familiar to the Indian
audience," the official of the Stark+Granit gallery told IANS.