Road show to give local art community a boost

Puducherry’s laidback atmosphere has prompted many an artist to settle down here. While galleries and art shows may be dime a dozen, the opportunities for the local art community to make a lucrative career out of art are often limited. For the first time, Puducherry’s tourism calendar of events will introduce an art festival in March, as a shot in the arm for local artists.

The annual art road show, a two-year old initiative, will be at the core of the festival, giving the local artist community a leg-up in terms of exposure and opportunities for collaboration. By recognising the road show, organised by the Pondicherry Ovia Nunkalai Kuzhu, as part of the annual calendar of events, the scope of the event has grown this year, says Malathi Rajavelu, president of the organisation. The one-day event would be held for two to three days this year and there is possibility of the government taking up the festival.

The event slated for March will bring art out of the galleries to the public space by showcasing works in and around Bharati Park. Though there is government support for artists in Puducherry, it is limited.

The main benefit of the show is allowing artists to make a direct sale. In a gallery, a substantial sum goes towards commission and the artist is left with a limited sum. But the art road show will allow artists to fix a price, negotiate on their own and make a sale without third party interference.

Cities like Bangalore have the annual art show by the Chitrakala Parishath that has turned in to be a signature event for art lovers. For upcoming local artists, workshops and seminars to fine tune techniques will be held by leading artists from across India.

Sand images terracotta, sculpture and carving will also be a part of the show this year. By taking art into the public spaces, the festival hopes to enhance knowledge of art, and promoting the town as an art hub.

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