Twelve private art galleries of the Capital have joined hands with Lalit Kala Akademi for an exhibition of contemporary art to coincide with the hosting of the Commonwealth Games in the city.

The exhibition titled “Art Celebrates! 2010” will be held at the Art Gallery of Lalit Kala Akademi from October 1 to 15. The exhibits will include paintings, sculptures, photographs and videos.

The art galleries have commissioned ten artists each to produce works dealing with various aspects of the Capital city with focus on sports and cityscape.

Noted art conservator Rupika Chawla is the curator of the show. “I conceptualised the idea three months ago and presented it to Lalit Kala Akademi chairman Ashok Vajpeyi who supported it enthusiastically,” says Ms. Chawla.

According to Akademi secretary Dr. Sudhakar Sharma, the exhibition is an example of public-private partnership. “An important feature of the show is the blow-ups of the art works that will come up across several landmarks in the Capital,” he adds.

Ms. Chawla says the rationale for this was that a lot of art made today is not seen by the public: “They don't enter galleries. The idea is to put up blow-ups of the works at Delhi Metro stations and Archaeological Society of India monument sites where there is maximum convergence of people, to draw them to art galleries.”

The galleries that will be part of the exhibition are Art Konsult, Gallery Threshold, Palette Art, Gallery Espace, Anant Art, Art Alive, Art Motive, Arushi Arts, Vadehra Art , Nature Morte, Gallery Ganesha and the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art.

Among the artists whose works will be on display include well-known names like Satish Gujral, Anjolie Ela Menon, Krishen Khanna to name just a few, beside several young and upcoming artists.

Art Alive director Sunaina Anand feels the exhibition will be a good opportunity to showcase the “vibrant art scene” in Delhi to visitors coming here for the Commonwealth Games. “Our artists are giving their own interpretation to the Games and the changing cityscape. While Apurva Desai's work is on how Delhi changed during the construction of the metro railway, Yusuf Arakkal has painted a boy earnestly looking at a football, aspiring to become David Beckham,” Ms. Anand says.

Several works will chronicle the changes that the city has undergone over a period of time, with focus on how it got ready for the Commonwealth Games. Gallery Espace director Renu Modi says the gallery chose its artists for “their understanding of urban life and their constant engagement with the city”.

Zarina Hasmi, who has shown her work at the Museum of Modern Art in New York, has made prints titled “Delhi-I”, “Delhi-II” and “Delhi-III”, which have been created using Delhi maps and show how the city landscape has changed over the years.

Artist Vibha Galhotra is showing a ceiling-based sculptural work made of metal ghungroos, fabric and plastic glue and photographs which talks about construction activity in the city that has added to the woes of the common man.

Ms. Chawla says a proposal to set up an artists' fund from sale of works used at the exhibition is doing the rounds, but a final decision is yet to be taken.

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