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Pocket-Friendly Art

by Georgina Maddox

An affordable art exhibition featuring the works of a group of artists, whose art is priced under 25 K, to appeal to new and young collectors

After the long, difficult months of the lockdown during which most of the art viewing moved online, Sangeet Shyamala’s Surrendra Paul Art Gallery offers its viewers an affordable art exhibition featuring the works of 26 artists, whose artwork is priced under 25 K, to appeal to new and young collectors or anyone who is looking for affordable art to do up their interiors.

The exhibition has aptly been titled 26 Under 25, and it features a variety of expressions, from works that are narrative and figurative to those which are abstract and contemplative. There are also works that are done using mixed media and etching and printmaking techniques as well as those that are high-photo-montage collage work and in relief acrylic.

The exhibition features Anju Kaushik, Avani Bakaya, Avneet Chawala, Gitanjali Kashyap, Hifzul Kabeer, Mallika Nagrajan, Meena Deora, Milan Sharma, Mohammad Naseem, Neerja Divate, Prabha Shah, Pratibha Singh Rameesh Singh, Renuka Sondhi Gulati, Renuka Verma, Ritika Sharma, Ritu Bhutani, Rubkirat Vohra, Satish Sharma, Shailesh BR, Shruti Binay, Shubhra Chaturvedi, Vibha Makhija, Vikram Naik.

A Mosaic of Memories by Avani Bakaya, 16" x 16", Oil on tile

Form, Space, Silence - III by Gitanjali Kashyap, 12" x 16.5", Charcoal and graphite on paper

Transcendental I by Meena Deora, 30" x 10", Oil on canvas

Memories by Milan Sharma, 20" x 14", Mixed media on paper

Cultural Diversity by Renuka Sondhi Gulati, 11" x 20", Digital art on art paper, 2019

The Clock Tower series by Ritu Bhutani 12" x 12", Mixed media on linen

Untitled by Shailesh BR, 11" x 9.5", Watercolour on paper

Regal Silencez by Sheikh Hifzul Kabeer, 11" x 14", Watercolour on paper

While artists like Neerja Divate, Alka Jhamb and Pratibha Singh offer purely abstract works, others like Anju Kaushik, Mohammad Naseem, Shruti Binay, Satish Sharma, Shubra Chaturvedi, Rubkirat Vohra and Vibha Makhija provide work that is experimental and in different materials. The others like Hifzul Kabeer, Mallika Nagrajan, Meena Deora, Milan Sharma, Shailesh BR and Vikram Naik provide work that is figurative, and in some instances, narrative in nature. The variety of subjects also allows the viewer a choice between that which is highly abstract and subtle to that which has a dense narrative. Even within the figurative works, there are painterly expressions to those which have a photo-realist approach.

Blue by Neerja Divate, 7.5" x 7.5", Mixed media, 2021

Untitled by Alka Jhamb, 10" x 10", Mixed media on canvas

Untitled by Pratibha Singh, 23" x 12", Mixed media on paper

Threads by Mohd Naseem, 18" x 12", Mixed media on cloth

Untitled III by Shruti Binay, 6" x 6", Mixed media

Untitled 3 by Satish Sharma, 16" x 16" x 5", PU form and acrylic colours

In Search series by Rubkirat Vohra, 6" x 6", Mixed media on board

The works are mostly small format in size and would fit easily in an apartment to brighten up the walls and bring value and aesthetics to even a cozy space. As it has been observed, well-curated art can make even a small space totally sing! It has been said by artists and collectors alike that while the majority of our culture is telling you to hurry, art tells you to take your time. Sometimes, it’s just good to listen to the art! Take time out to look at a painting, to let it move from the background to the foreground.

In the age of artificial intelligence and a machine-oriented lifestyle, with Alexa picking out your music, turning on your gadgets, and even functioning as your agony aunt, it’s wonderful to connect back to something that is a handmade work of art. While engaging with that which is handmade, you can get a sense of the time, effort, and skill that went into its creation. You may even have the chance to meet the artist in person or hear the story behind the work. Witnessing the brush strokes or marks on the work serves as a reminder of the person behind the work of art.

(All images are courtesy of the Sangeet Shyamala gallery and the respective artists)


Georgina Maddox is an independent critic-curator with almost two decades of experience in the field of Indian art and culture. She was assistant editor at India Today’s Mail Today and senior arts writer for the Indian Express and the Times of India. She is currently working in the media as an independent critic for various publications and has published articles in Open Magazine, India Today, Harper’s Bazaar, Vogue and also in Elle Magazine, The Hindu and Business Line, Sunday Magazine BLINK, TAKE on Art, Time Out, and online with US based E-magazine, Studio International, STIR world and MASH Mag.


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