Virtual Reality

Online art galleries are now bridging the distance between artists and art lovers offline

Written by Parul | Published:September 3, 2013 12:52 am

A selection of artwork exhibited recently in the city by the online portal,Art Butter,was exhaustive,with 58 works by 36 artists. Founded by entrepreneur Naina Sachdev,Art Butter strives to offer contemporary art at competitive prices to art lovers. “Apart from established Indian artists,we provide young and emerging artists a platform to showcase their talent,” says Sachdev.

The art curator,who also offers customised art solutions for homes,offices and hotels,observes that art lovers and buyers are more open to various changes in art world. “This is precisely why we were in Chandigarh with our exhibition. We want to showcase works which will appeal to different tastes,as well as understand how people look at experimental works,” says Sachdev. As opposed to a few years ago,Sachdev feels people no longer limit to big names,but are open to the new and young,as long as there’s something fresh.

While online art galleries,she points out,make it convenient for artists to sell their works and get a wider audience,the medium also gives art lovers the opportunity to research before making an investment. Travelling art shows are equally important to know the pulse of people,she adds. “This exhibition is an effort in that regard,and the showcase will become more frequent in Chandigarh and Punjab,” says Sachdev,who also has plans for art workshops.

Similarly,Ocher Art,a Chandigarh-based online gallery,is working to promote art in the city. Artist Baani Sekhon set it up with a few like-minded people earlier this year to work closely with other artists and connect to art lovers. Apart from paintings,the website features digital art,photographs,sculptures and multimedia creations. “The idea is to connect online with offline reality and have long-term associations with artists,” says Sekhon.

The internet,she feels,has accelerated the pace with which art lovers can connect to the art world and Ocher Art doesn’t want to ignore the traditional method of viewing art. Their first exhibition a few months ago was a big success,with 90 works by artists from across the country. “The idea was to bring artists who have not been exposed to this region,” says Sekhon.

The art world,she adds,can be intimidating for first-time buyers. With an online membership to Ocher Art,a buyer can mark a favourite art piece and revisit it at leisure,while the gallery’s showcase brings the work closer. “We hope to develop a debate on the contemporary art scene and facilitate a cross-cultural dialogue,” says Sekhon.

Elsewhere,Anuja Lath’s canvas of creativity is exqualling large. The city-based entrepreneur,art collector and the brains behind IndianArtCollectors.com,is busy finalising a showcase of the artists in Mumbai. “We will be taking the show to other cities,” says Lath,who recently opened Art Lounge in Sector 34. While the website is a forum for collectors and contemporary artists,the Lounge strives to give art enthusiasts and collectors a chance to see the works physically,know new trends and buy works. “Through the Lounge,we want visitors to understand the style and technique of an artist,and then view the rest of his/her works online and buy art at their convenience,” says Lath,who works with more than 400 artists and is looking to take it forward.

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