Boman Irani, celebrated actor, photographer and vocalist inaugurated the Mumbai Art Fair that made a grand comeback after two years of pandemic, bailing to bring back affordable art to the masses and to generate commercial income for artists. Over 650 artists exhibited over 3500 diverse works at the Nehru Centre. Mumbai Art Fair is designed specially for independent artists who look for affordable options to exhibit their artworks in the metro cities and reach to the wider arts audience and potential art buyers.
More than 3500 paintings in various mediums such as oils, acrylics, water colour, pastels, charcoal with sculptures in stone, metal, and photographs by over 650 artists, 350 of whom were present, few of them young, upcoming, mid-career as well as established were selected for presentation in this edition of Mumbai Art Fair. The diverse mix of landscapes, abstracts, figurative art and spiritual paintings, semi-nudes, rural and pastoral scenes, cityscapes and paintings on varied subjects in myriad styles and numerous soft, bright and rustic hues were displayed at MAF, at the ground floor, discovery of India building, Nehru Centre from 28 to 30 Oct 2022.
Mumbai Art Fair (MAF) brought wide variety of ‘art choices’ in a very economical budget not only for seasoned buyers, but for budding art lovers. Art scene was changing slowly in India and art was no longer reserved just for high-end corporate and art collectors but today’s new millennials too started visiting art exhibitions to looked for artworks to created inspiring and soothing ambiance around their living spaces
This year MAF attracted diverse participation by many new faces among the regular participants working in different styles broaching plethora of subjects. In this year, regular names in the art fair circuit like Sayed Zuber Baker, Nishi Sharma, Anjali Prabhakar, Antra Shrivastava, Niyati Amlani, Neha Thackeray, Vineet Kaur, Beena Surana, Jalpa Patel, Vishal Sabley, R Soloman, S Vinitkumar, Sriparna Sinha, Soumen Kar, Om Tadkar, Naishita Reddy, Alpa Mistry, Rajitha, Manoj Swain, Rahat Kazmi, Prakash Bal Joshi, Prithvi Soni and others didn’t fail to mesmerize viewers by their varied creative output, rich in aesthetic content
The works of Janhvi Bhide, Moshe Dayan, Praveen Naresh, Sachita Aditi, Yashvi Goyal, Dileep Kosode, Gursimaran Kaur, Ishita Malpani, Jenaifer Daruwalla, Kailas Kale, Mona Jain, Nakesha Bhosle, Neha Ruia are the kind of simplifications of reality in which artists have eliminated the details from recognisable objects leaving only the essence or some degree of recognisable form, representing things that aren’t visual, such as emotion, sound, or spiritual experience. The artworks of Neha Thackeray, Pooja Ray, Rachana Miglani, Rahat Kazmi, Rajat Kumar, Rishail, Sateesh Dingankar, Shehbaaz Khan, Shruti Solanki, Suryakant Rajapkar and Vinitkumar lingered on the border of abstraction and semi-abstraction.
Lord Ganesha, the symbol of strength and power was portrayed by Chandrika Paurana, Madhuri Devlikar, Manoj Swain, Shivani Banerjee, and Sona Kapur, in their distinct style whereas artist Banani Kundu, Bhoomika Detroja, Hansa Bhatt, Jeenu Madan, Kinjal Gehlot, Prachi Selot Samota, Shubhangi Mehta, Sreenath Thampi, Suvarna Chawande, Vidya Shivramkrishnan and Yogita Kogle highlighted creative life force through the depiction of their favourite divinities and faiths in the lines, colours and forms. Artist Naishita Reddy, Dollar Mandal, Gaurav Dagar, Ramesh Kumar, Santosh Lanjekar and Suraj Shukla presented the realistic figurations with vibrant inventiveness through their works displayed at Mumbai Art Fair.
Akansha Punjabi, Jagadish Ray, Lata Malani, Shruti Srivastava, Darshan Mahajan, Archana Sharma, Neha Agrawal, Niyati Amlani, Pratibha Goel, Seema Oza, Shalini Gupta, Sonal Salekar, Sushma Oza, Vineet Kaur exhibiting at MAF had dealt with distinct colour to illustrate their visual ideas in ‘figurative’ genre, sometime in simple forms but making complex reading, creating strong narrative content
The paintings of artist Anindita Biswas Roy, Basudeb Pradhan, Jayashree Gole, Rahul Naskar, Rakesh Sonkusare, Sriparna Sinha, Mousumi Sircar made viewers feel that they are right in the middle of their painting; such was the mesmerising treatment given by these talented artists to their nature-scapes that viewer feel as though they could breathe the very air of the painting and reach out and touch the landscape as if it was all real. The slightly different variant of abstract landscapes, cityscapes, architectural grandiose, and flower-scape paintings by Atul Bhalerao, Chetan Bhosle, Padmini Bhatia, Rinni Patel, Sandeep Parkhie, Vittal Moppidy, Vyoma Parikh, K B Shikhare, R Soloman, Radhika Bawa, Ravi Waybhat, Deepal Bhat, Hena Prasun, Shirish Ambekar, Anupama Thakur, Anuradha Bhalla, Ashdeep Babra, Diptina Kothari, Nidhi Sharma, Poonam Khanvilkar, Raksha Jesrani, Rohini Lokhande, Jasjit Sidhu and Neena Mehrok were the added attraction in the Mumbai Art Fair for the viewers.
The inspiring force behind the works by B Meghmala, Deepak Mukherjee, Monalisa Parikh, Namrita Nagra, Paridhi Jain, Sayali Nagarkar, Sudha Ramkrishnan, Vikram Bhatti, Vinayak Nigam and Vishal Sabley is their belief and faith that prompted them to create an impressive and wondrous works of art which generated mystical aura and spiritual vibrations around them. The amount of detailing in sculptures by Devel Sharma, Pankaj Gadakh, Soumen Kar, and Sujit Kumar Mukhopadhyay was simply phenomenal and these sculptures were surely an extra attraction in the art fair.
The Baroque animal painting tradition originated around seventeenth century in the western art world have found many followers across the world who portray animals, sometime using landscape as the background. Artist Alpana Dangi, Anna Kurian, Dipti Kumar, Rushan Shah and Shankar Rajput seemed to be mesmerised by the beauty and power of different animals such as horses, bulls, elephants and stags. The other artists who got fascinated by wildlife were Haripriya Kulkarni, Jalpa Patel, Poonam Juvale, Praveena Parepalli and Saket Arbhi; their artworks was a perfect visual treat for wild-life lovers visiting art fair. Viewers could select beautiful paintings from a charming variety of flying bird paintings executed dexterously by Anrita Basu, Bhaduri Shah Baria, Sanjivanee Bhoir and Shankar Pamarthy.
Richness and depth can be achieved in the subtle manipulation of light and shadow without colour. A world without colour is nonetheless rich in texture as the artist Akshata Shetty, Beena Surana, Chaitali Bareja Sharma, Ena Tondon, Insiya Patrawala, Kanishkar Mehra, Khurram Amir, Krish Nandi, Krupali Gondhalekar, Madhavi Bhaskar, Nikhil Usare, Raj Kumar, Rupali Mhatre and Vijay Kumawat explored a variety of themes and styles in a monochromatic pallet. The common thread that binds the works of Christina Ravi, Deepa Siddharth, Doyel Sinha, Kirthi Shetty, Kumaraswami B, Manju Das, Alpa Mistry, Namrata Bagwe, Priyanka Singh, Samridhi Sharma, Swarnajeet Kaur and Tara Isa was their female protagonists presented in various context and situations.
The use of geometric forms to create rhythmic patterns and fluid forms in the works of Annarapu Narendra, Jyoti Sharma, Mohit Jangid, Nirja Shah, Prachi Gala, Princy Jain, Uchit Turakhia and Vaishali Chanda was an experiment in illusion art that tricks the eye and mind to perceive images different than what they are on the pictorial surface. The assemblage by Rohan Kunthale, Serigraph by Trishna Bhati and woodcuts by three generation of artists in Dubey family, black & white photograph by Sangram Naik, and surreal compositions by Aditi Khandelwal, Kaushal Parikh, Kunwar S S Punwar, Madhu Kuruva, Naveena Ganjoo and Subarna Bagchi compelled the viewer to take a second look at them. Female nudes when done by female artist acquire the different dimension; this was demonstrated in the works of Meenakshi Shukla and Payal Moni.
Portraits displayed in the Mumbai Art Fair by Nilima Dani and Vineet Kaur and stylised works by B Narahari, Kashiram Pinjare and Saurabh Dhingare were the specimen of matured handling of subject with witty use of colour composition. Plethora of artworks by artist Anita Mukherjee, Atma Shyam, Bharati Hingane, Devvrat Singh Sengar, Divya Menon, Ramashankar Mishra, Shankar Sharma, Kanan Khant, Karishma Surve, Manjusha Kanade, Meena Raghavan, Navin Agarwal, Nikita Dani, Pinal Panchal, Rubina Hasan, Shalaka Patil, Shruti Kasana, Soni Singh, Sreenivasa Ram and Supriya Kaluskar are the form of tradition art or at least inspired by our traditional arts like Pichwai, Warli Art, Gond Art, Mughal style, and miniature art styles. Artists exhibiting in the Mumbai Art Fair Hiya Juthani, Nayana Patel, Nilesh Upadhyay, Pavani Nagpal, Praveen Kaveri, Purvi Lohana, Rhea Narkar, Seema Oza, and Shivani Patidar approached reality through the use of seemingly abstract looking colour patches and shades to create something as comprehensible as if it is real but still has dreamy quality to it akin to pseudo realism.
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The enchantingly luminous water colour pieces by Gitanjali Shah, Mukta Kadam, Niyati Amlani and Shyam Karri combines the reflection of the white paper along with its texture exploiting the translucent tenderness of watercolour; the effect is wistful! Though Mukta Kadam did not fall in the temptation of using water colour’s qualities to boost its visual appeal but takes her artworks much more beyond merely what is overtly visible; they need multiple readings to dig deeper in her visual connotations. Artists Anjali Prabhakar, Antra Shrivastava, Bandana Kumari, Bhamini Sarda, Rajitha, Eshmeet Thapar, Jyoti Singh, Medha Nerurkar, Neerja Kujur, Preeti Shaw, Priya Kataria, Purnima Walunj, Riya Nahata, Sayed Bakar and Vinod Venkapalli visually communicate and symbolize fundamental truths of their subjects through the symbolic compositions.
Mumbai art fair was a sort of dawn for the independent artists; it formed a hub, a burgeoning estuary for the creative alignments of every kind. After the long pandemic, art fair works as a crucible of hyperactivity and generates enough energy to make a difference in the current art market.
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