Thursday, September 3, 2009

It’s critical for art lovers to engage with the artist

The Business Standard columnist, Kishore Singh, makes an interesting point that one should ideally extend one’s relationship with artists going beyond mere patronage if you collect art.

Explaining the point by illustrating ‘Heart Beat - Beat Heart’ by renowned artist Sunil Gawde, the art expert states: “It’s the artists themselves who (obviously) have the most logical, or sincere take on what really motivates them — the aesthetic, or the market — and it’s they you need to turn to for understanding what they are trying to communicate.”

As Kishore Singh rightly mentions, “Engaging with the artist is critical for collectors and art lovers today, more so than at any other time. And before investing money or your time, or both, you must act like a curious (or even the disdainful) teenager who won’t easily buy into your argument. They are not embarrassed to ask what the art represents.”

Of course, the artists are not always available for such intellectual engagements. Your best bet, the columnist suggests, is to look out for them through the galleries, which represent them, at art events, or large gatherings like art fairs, summits and seminars. Well, before you do so, it might serve you well to do a comprehensive research on the artist, are the words of wisdom on offer.

If you can court artist/s, it’s so much the better. There is nothing like a vigorous debate for stimulating conversations and ideas; even more interesting if you admire a particular artist’s work but do not necessarily agree with his or her social or political arguments as represented by his or her creations.

The columnist concludes: “I admire collectors who opt to acquire works they might not be in agreement with but are willing to listen to and accept that the artists too have a point of view they can articulate according to the ideas and mediums available.”

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