Once upon a time, collectors and connoisseurs were the repository of art, and artists were more or less unapproachable

Once upon a time, a brush with art demanded your physical presence; a trip to the nearest gallery, a painting at a friend’s house, an auction that threw up something valuable. Collectors and connoisseurs were the repository of art, and artists were more or less unapproachable.

The Internet has changed a lot in our lives. It has made things faster, more accessible and less rarefied. Today, a beautiful piece of art is a click away. Art is much more accessible and online virtual galleries have brought the artist and his/her work right to your screen at the click of a button. Thus you have www.emergingartists.in, launched by Aliana Art Advisory in collaboration with Art Alive Gallery, which aims to nurture and promote emerging talents across the country and give them an opportunity to showcase their works to a worldwide audience. For private collectors and buyers, the site will serve as an online gallery offering art at affordable price.

Every year, emerging artists will hold an annual exhibition with the overarching title: Critics’ Choice.

This year, the first show is titled ‘@rt virtually Real’. Curator Georgina Maddox, an independent curator and art critic, says that this exhibition tends to “explore the dual and multiple selves that are created both in real life and on the Internet. Over recent years art has expanded its notion to move beyond formal canvases, sculptures or even installation-based art to include a slew of flash art, gaming-inspired art, found footage, video art, digital-video jockeying and art that comments on social networking sites.” The artists featured in the exhibition are Abir Patwardhan, Aditi Kulkarni, Anil Thambai, Debasish Dutta, Gaurav Singh , Harekrishna Talukdar, Kanika Sharma, Mahua Sen, Nakul Mondal, Nilanjana Nandy, P.Bujinga Rao, Padmaja, Prasun Roy, Pratap Morey, Rajesh Salgaonkar, Rajnish Chhanesh, Sameer Tawde, Satadru Sovan, Sidharth Pansari, Sonatina Mendes, Sudipta Das, Suraj Kumar Kashi, Vijil Chooliyad and Vivek Gujral.

A large-scale exhibition featuring several mediums — from conventional canvases and sculptures to alternative media like performance, video-installation art and photography — @rt Virtually Real aims to explore the shift in art as well as artists. How do artists respond to the widening, fast-changing market? Has it changed the way they work, the way they position themselves or the way they perceive their audience?

Bottomline: Exploring the dual and multiple selves created both in real life and on the Internet.

@rt Virtually Real: First Annual Show of Emergingartists.in

Where: Art Alive Gallery, Plot 120 Sector 44, Gurgaon

When: Till October 20