The fourth India Art fair has just closed its doors and it is not too early to mark your diaries for a visit when it re-opens its gates next year at its purpose built area in Okhla. The facade which was done by Sumant Jayakrishnam was a lovely combination of cool metal with the warmth of coloured wool which gave a rainbow effect.
Walking around this venue I came across a work which just made me smile, Hangover Man III. I havent seen I and II so I dont know if this is an improvement on the others but it was fun. Siddhartha Karawal created it with the help of knotted white T shirts- he said it was a satirical account of time and space he lives in.
There were about 80 galleries exhibiting from all over the world, White Cube and Lisson Galleries in London. Vadehra and Grosvenor one of the foremost galleries in Delhi and London, Abadi Art very much on the experimental side and a host of others which were taking part for the first time. A sign of the times ? Undoubtedly though by a french curator's humble opinion Indian Art has just become too pricey too quickly. Still, it is there for all to see and admire or hate as the case may be and I have to confess to a moment of arted- out when I simply could not take in any more.
On my tour it was clear that Rashid Rana is one of the foremost artist being displayed by a number of galleries for his beautiful pixalated art work. I will never forget seeing one of his works at the KNMA which presented a whole different image up close (small pictures of slaughterhouses) to looking at it from a distance (a beautiful Persian carpet.) Pakistani in origin and talking a lot about the social inequalities and issues in his country. They are massive works and do not come across in a small picture but once you see his work you cannot miss it thereafter.
There was also work that was positively off the wall and perhaps not to my taste but I very much enjoyed seeing some of the younger artists and what they were doing. One such was Rathin Barman who was born in 1981 ( Yes, I know that young ! ) who is concerned with urbanism and materialism. I loved the way he took bricks from a wall and created little homes on individual pieces or used bricks to build a tree encased in a metal frame.