Saturday, October 3, 2009

Even though public art in India is limited, art is going public through fairs, works of F N Souza, Ram Kumar and Satish Gujral were at ART EXPO INDIA


Nehru Centre in Mumbai might not be frequented by art connoisseurs but last weekend over 20,000 enthusiasts were visited the venue to view artwork from 30 galleries around the world at Art Expo India. “It’s a forum that allows viewers to look at a collection that is representative,” says Vickram Sethi, chairman of the three-day fair. He adds, “Entering galleries could be intimidating and a forum like this helps initiate new people into the world art.”
Day-3 was rushed, those who has visited again came to finalize their deal and those who were in Navaratri fast also came after ending their puja, the discussion forum was also very interesting.Sharan Apparao, Menaka Kumari-Shah and Brian Brown, the three proven art experts, mulled over ‘buying art in today’s recessionary times’ at Art Expo India 2009. Their opinions count because all three are well versed with the ground realities of the art market.

Menaka Kumari-Shah, India Representative of the Christies, brings considerable knowledge and experience of the domain. Starting with a Mumbai-based charity, where she arranged exhibits and auctions. She further developed a career in the arts. She joined Christie’s London (2005) as a coordinator for its biennial Arts of India auction, after apprenticing in the Indian Dept. of the British Museum.

Sharan Apparao has built Apparao Galleries into one of the leading contemporary art avenues in India. She is tuned to the changing trends including globalization of art. Her keen interest and passion for contemporary art drives Apparao Galleries that caters to the aesthetic needs of the eclectic clients. Thanks to her astute insight, the gallery has unearthed some of the most renowned names on contemporary Indian art scene.

Brian Brown, who holds a degree in Finance & Economics from California State University, Sonoma, is a financial and stock market expert with immense passion for art collecting. He is currently focused on creating liquidity in the Indian Private Equity space. He is an avid collector and researcher of contemporary Indian art.

The tone and intent of the talk was extremely positive and encouraging for prospective buyers. Menaka Kumari-Shah observed that there has been a perceptible change in the profile of buyers. The major difference, she noted that, art buying earlier was driven by a sense of patriotism. NRIs connected to their homeland though it. However, after the art boom that happened five years ago, domestic interest in the Indian art scene grew multifold.

According to her, a class of buyers priced out of the market, during the phase is gradually returning to it. Sharan Apparao, unwinding the ups and downs of the market cycle, underlined the fact that ‘investors’ essentially followed market trends, but now true collectors were back on the scene. She noted that even the investor-type-of-buyers were not such a negative force and that she enjoyed working with both sets of buyers.

Brian Brown underlined the fact that markets were currently going through a consolidation phase, having witnessed both the boom and the bust. He observed that people look at art and property as tangible assets compared to something else that may disappear. Pointing to the correlation between the stock markets and the alternate asset classes like art, he emphasized the lag effect and believed that the latter was already on a recovery path.
ART EXPO INDIA 2009 has ended with a promising note, it will again back on december 2010 said organizer.

The Ashok Art Gallery is internationally known for one of its most important holdings: more than 2000 major works by the world's most significant Artists.Over the past years, as Ashok Art Gallery has become a major centre for contemporary visual art, the Gallery has built a strong collection of contemporary work of different artists, we became a sponsor of the STANDUP-SPEAKOUT Artshow, Organized by Art Of Living Foundation and United Nations.Organized an International Contenmporary Art Exhibition including artists from USA, The Nederlands, Pakistan and India.We have also participated at Art Expo India Mumbai and India Art Summit New Delhi.

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