It’s that time of year, dear reader.
Time for the India Art Fair, a fabulous event showcasing striking and exciting works of art, alongside THE absolute best people watching in Delhi NCR 🙂
Over the years, some exhibits have seemed a tad same-old-same-old-y or even deliberately provocative just for the sake of it, but this year the works on display were by and large interesting and eye-catching, with a few truly amazing works.
Firstly, there are always a few artists remembered from previous shows, and I revisit their work with affection. Like so:
The stand-outs for me are, in no particular order of preference:
The dazzling “Waterlilies” by Ai Weiwei.
It is just amazing, both seen from a distance and close up – a colossal piece, made of Lego bricks (the sign says “woma” bricks, but they look like lil’ Lego bricks to me)
It is truly fabulous.
Another fabulous exhibit was the display of black & white photos of the Sidi community. I had seen the works of the talented Ketaki Sheth back in 2013 at an exhibition at the National Gallery of Modern Art (here’s the link to my review of her photos at the time) and they are every bit as powerful and fascinating second time round:
I loved, loved, loved another monumental installation called “The Estate of Ahmed Ali Assembly”
It is a mesmerising collection of 98 group portraits “all shot in the same factory, Machinery Manufactures Corporation Ltd., Calcutta, on the same day or on consecutive days in 1952.”
Here is a little of the background:
I found it fascinating, wanting to learn more about every person featured.
And last but not least, just feast your eyes on this beauty, below, by the New York based, Israeli artist Yogal Ozeri.
Isn’t it JUST like every neighbourhood bookshop you have visited?
We met the artist, who was delightfully chatty. He confirmed that the painting above and the one below were from photographs that he had taken.
I thoroughly enjoyed myself, met friends which is always a fun part of the India Art Fair, but the one thing we didn’t do was have tea at Elma’s because there was already quite a queue. This is a blatant shout out, because Elma’s is run by my niece 🙂
Go say hello to Anam from me 🙂
As is now traditional, I have a little game that I play – namely choosing which work of art I would take home with me, were money no object.
There have been years when I had difficulty choosing, so underwhelming were the works on show, but this year, I was spoiled for choice.
I’d happily have walked home with the Ai Weiwei AND the amazing The Estate of Ahmed Ali Assembly AND the stunning painting of the Bookseller.
When asked, my husband immediately said he’d have chosen the bookseller painting too, so that settles it.
The exhibition is on at the NSIC grounds from today, 1st February to 4th February. The timings (below) are from the website:
“The BMW VIP Preview will take place from 3pm – 7pm on Thursday 1 Feb 2024 followed by the Select Preview from 11am – 7pm on Friday, 2 Feb 2024, offering collectors and visitors the opportunity to experience and acquire the finest works available before the fair opens to the public. Public entry is from 12pm – 7pm on Saturday 3 Feb 2024 and 10am – 6pm on Sunday 4 Feb 2024.”
Let me say one hing, however:
Getting to the NSIC grounds is a pain in the proverbial, with insane traffic, and crazy loud non-stop honking from every single driver trying to push his way into the venue. We went on the first afternoon, with VIP passes, not even 40 minutes after the exhibition had opened…and the parking was already full.
I really think a new venue needs to be found.