EXHIBITS of Bengal artists are on the rise in art hubs like Mumbai and Delhi. Shows of this genre are also travelling to leading overseas centres like New York, London and Dubai. Based on estimates, Mumbai and Delhi could be each witnessing around four to five major shows of Bengal artists yearly. In step, half a dozen smaller exhibits of artists from Kolkata are also unfolding in both the metros.
“While this trend has been around for sometime now, it has definitely picked up much more in recent times. A couple of reasons, one feels, are triggering this development. The first centres on the quality of works that Kolkata artists produce. Second, Bengal artists are still more affordable compared to their counterparts in Mumbai and Delhi. It is also true, of course, that gallery owners in Mumbai, Delhi or even overseas are giving Bengal artists a closer look than they used to earlier,” an art market source told ET.
The major events, the source said, are those revolving around solo shows of reputed artists, while the smaller shows normally field the younger lot of lesser known names.
Some of the established Kolkata galleries, which have fielded exhibits in Mumbai, Delhi and overseas, include Sanskriti, Galerie 88, CIMA, Chitrakoot, Akar Prakar and Birla Academy. At the same time, galleries in the other cities or overseas have also invited artists in Kolkata to stage shows.
Among the artists who have been shown in other cities in India or abroad lately are Shyamal Datta Ray, Jogen Chowdhury, Ganesh Haloi, Suvaprasanna, Chandra Bhattacharjee, Shipra Bhattacharjee, Prasenjit Sengupta, Jayashree Chakravarty and Partha Shaw. Sanskriti is soon planning a major exhibit of Lalu Prasad Shaw in Kolkata, which will subsequently move to Mumbai and Delhi. The show, which will feature 100 early and later creations by Lalu Prasad Shaw, could travel to an overseas locale too.
“These shows are benefiting city-based artists. They are helping the artists to get a wider exposure. Various buyers, including collectors and investors, are viewing the works.
Thus, artists grow their reach in the art market. The volume of sales of their artworks also increases. Although one can’t step up prices of the works just because the exhibits are being fielded in larger centres, the artists’ values rise in the normal course as they gain more popularity in these markets,” the source said.