Monday, September 20, 2010

The name that sells art

Peter Nagy, the city gallerist behind top contemporary art masters, identifies new talent with big- ticket potential published in Mail Today, the country's leading newspaper.

ART is quite like wine and it is not just because both of these qualify as fine things of life for which one needs an evolved taste and of course, some load in the pockets too.

The similarity, however, goes further.

The time that a good wine takes to mature is pretty much akin to what it takes for a potentially superior artist to come into his own. The least of all, it’s the signature behind a wine and an art work that matters.

And that’s the reason why we’ve chosen to talk about the show, The Present Is Now , which also marks the launch of a new online art initiative, the The signature behind this show is that of one of the most important names in contemporary Indian art, Peter Nagy, who runs the well- known Gallery Nature Morte in Neeti Bagh in the city. Nagy has curated the first show of this online venture, which hosts the work of art graduates from across the country, who have not managed to find a right platform yet for their art. The is the brainchild of collector Kapil Chopra who blogs on Indian contemporary art at indiaartinvest.blogspot. com.

Nagy doesn’t need an introduction to all those who keep a close tab on contemporary Indian art. He doesn’t accept the fact that he has had a big role to play in the shaping of careers of some of the biggest names in contemporary Indian art — Subodh Gupta, Bharti Kher, Thukral and Tagra, and Jagannath Panda to name a few.

So, when he gets on board, he doubles the credibility of an artwork which may not have been able to run fast enough on its own steam.

“The fact that I’m curating this show doesn’t mean that these artists are going to get a show at Nature Morte. What it does mean is that of all the works on the website, these looked better and come with half- potential to make something of the artists’ careers,” explains Nagy. The seven artists whose canvases Nagy has chosen should be glad to have come under the vision of one of the most important movers and shakers of contemporary art. ( See the images and details on right) Nagy feels that a lot goes into the making of a successful artist which is the cumulative effect of several factors like talent, personality, right backing, shows at right galleries, a lot of hard work, how they react to different situations and more.

“When I first did a solo with Subodh in 2000, I knew he was going to be a superstar though people had thought I was nuts to be doing a show where nothing had sold. The artists that I’ve picked up from the bestcollegeart. com are totally unknown to me. The next step would be to meet them and understand them,” he explains when we ask him about what makes him pick up a certain artist’s work. Getting Nagy on the team, of course, is a feather in the cap for Chopra. “ Every year, nearly 1,200 artists graduate from art colleges in India. But only about 25 of them strike it big.

Through this website, we want to support the young artists, to raise money when they are pursuing their masters and up till 10 years of graduating,” explains Chopra. He is hosting an Art Brunch at Trident hotel, Gurgaon, on September 19, to fete the new venture. If you happen to be there, you can listen to interesting tales of artists from the farthest corners of the country uploading their works on the website and managing to find buyers for their works.

As for the chosen few from the website’s collection, who have caught Nagy’s attention, it’s time to make something out of their nascent art careers.

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