70 artworks, 14 artists, 2 weeks: how this Art Houz Bengaluru exhibition honours women artists
Launched in 2014, PhotoSparks is a weekly feature from YourStory, with photographs that celebrate the spirit of creativity and innovation. In the earlier 460 posts, we featured an art festival, cartoon gallery. world music festival, telecom expo, millets fair, climate change expo, wildlife conference, startup festival, Diwali rangoli, and jazz festival.
Art Houz Bengaluru recently hosted an exhibition featuring 70 artworks by 14 women artists from around India. Launched in honour of International Women’s Day, the exhibition was titled I Rise, Edition VI.
“This is the sixth edition of this special exhibition, and showcases various mediums and styles,” explains curator Jayanthi Shegar, in a chat with YourStory. The show was inaugurated by Prof. MJ Kamalakshi, Vice President of Karnataka Chitrakala Parishat, and Divya Sara Thomas, Deputy Commissioner of Police, City Armed Reserve Headquarters.
International Women’s Day honours the women who pioneered the struggle for empowerment, and also reminds us that there is still discrimination and inequality to be overcome, Jayanthi explains. “Women across the globe are making their mark in politics, education, social work, business, sports, IT, research and development, innovation, and so many diverse fields,” she adds.
The displayed artworks are priced from Rs 3,000 to Rs 60,000. As show in this photo essay, they span paintings, drawings, pen on paper, papier mache, portraits, etching, photography, and installations.
The artist lineup includes Arathi HK , Bhavani GS, Harshita Vishnu, Kapila Nahender, Kalavathy Kamalnathan, Nalini Nagaraj, Runa Biswas, Sashirekha Rajasekhar, Sharmila Aravind, Sonali Iyengar, Sunita Patil, Urmila VG, and Yamini Pallem. One of the artists, Zidrija Janusaite, is from Lithuania.
With galleries in Coimbatore, Chennai and Bengaluru, Art Houz Art was founded in 2012 by Vincent Adaikalraj. It showcases traditional and contemporary artists, and promotes their work at international events like India Art Fair (see our coverage here).
“Art is a mirror of the artist's mind, a reflection of the artist's imagination at work. If you know that, and bear it in mind when looking at artworks, your eyes will be alert for the visual details that convey the message,” Jayanthi explains.
Art can also be a form of catharsis for the artists through self-exploration and self-expression, as manifested in characteristic elements and details. “When I curated this show, I had only one thing in my mind. I wanted to amalgamate works by women artists who had overcome barriers and achieved breakthroughs,” Jayanthi explains.
She is optimistic about the potential of the art movement in India. “Art is definitely getting explored in many new platforms, and many other fields are connecting to art,” she observes.
She calls for more art spaces to promote and support art in every form, so as to ensure a bright future for the field. “Art is definitely a subject to which everyone is directly or indirectly connected,” Jayanthi adds.
Given the wealth of India’s tradition and culture, she calls for more public spaces to be utilised to showcase this heritage. “More art should be encouraged and inculcated in schools as part of children’s upbringing. Every common citizen should be given opportunities to appreciate and partake in art,” Jayanthi emphasises.
Art Houz Bengaluru was launched on Palace Road in 2014, and has featured over 70 exhibitions over the years. It organises public showcases as well as corporate events. Jayanthi also tracks trends at national and international events like the India Art Fair and Singapore Art Fair, and connects to artists from around the world.
Jayanthi says she received good feedback during the exhibition, with many viewers appreciating the blend of joy, prosperity, hurdles, and sorrows. “The exhibition had different mediums, styles, themes, and age groups of artists, and showed how everything is emotionally connected,” Jayanthi enthuses.
“Every person who comes as a member of the audience is a big support to us as a gallery. We request the audience to study the artwork, and welcome them to ask us questions about it,” she advises the public.
“Initially, one may not connect with art, but over time and with interest one can enrich perceptions and perspectives. We are there to help viewers appreciate art, and invest in it as well,” Jayanthi explains. While many things are perishable, art has longer lasting value, and is worthy of being an asset class for investors.
She also offers tips for aspiring artists. “Art is about your personal connection to the theme, medium and style. While commercial interests are important, do not forego this connection,” she urges. “Art is very intimate, so keep it as your signature,” Jayanthi signs off.
Now, what have you done today to pause in your busy schedule and connect to your deeper creative core?
Jayanthi Shegar (centre)
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