10th Edition India Art Fair 2018

India Art Fair closes its tenth edition amidst reports of strong sales and new energy and confidence in the South Asian art market

India Art Fair, the leading platform for contemporary and modern art from South Asia, closed its tenth edition on 12 February 2018, amidst positive commentary from galleries, artists, museum professionals, and collectors. For the first time under the leadership of Fair Director Jagdip Jagpal, the 2018 India Art Fair set the tone for the future development of the fair’s offer, creating anticipation and confidence for future editions.

A clarified and refreshed programme saw a more tightly curated representation of galleries, with exhibition halls dominated by India’s leading galleries, presented alongside carefully selected galleries from South Asia, Europe, the US and South America.

Galleries from India, South Asia and across the world reported making sales throughout the fair to an international collector base representing countries including Australia, Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Dubai, Egypt, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Israel, Japan, Kuwait, Mainland China, Malaysia, Netherlands, Russia, Singapore, Switzerland, the UAE, the UK and the US. Acquisitions were also made at the fair by a number of museums, institutions and private foundations, from India and worldwide.

The fair welcomed the largest number of museum patrons, curators, directors from museums festivals, biennials, private foundations and arts organizations to date, signaling a growing global interest in Modern and Contemporary Indian art. These included Devi Art Foundation, Gujral Foundation, Kiran Nadar Museum of Art (all New Delhi); Bhau Daji Lad Museum (Mumbai); Kasturbhai Lalbhai Museum (Ahmedabad); Singapore Art Museum, Teng Collection (both Singapore); Asia Pacific Triennial (Australia); Fosun Foundation, M Woods (both China); Alserkal Avenue, Louvre Abu Dhabi, New York University Abu Dhabi Art Gallery (all UAE); Ecole des Beaux Arts (France); Rijksakademie (Netherlands); Contemporary Art Society, Manchester Museums, Tate, Whitworth Art Gallery (all UK); Art Institute of Chicago, Cincinnati Museum, Lowe Art Museum, MoMA, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston (all US).

Leading artists from across South Asia attended the fair, including Sangeeta Abhay, Ravi Agarwal, Manisha Gera Baswani, Jayasri Burman, Shakti Burman, Astha Butail, Lubna Chowdhary, Samit Das, Sudipta Das, Rohini Devasher, Anju Dodiya, Atul Dodiya, Anita Dube, Tanya Goel, Satish Gujral, Subodh Gupta, G R Iranna, Jitish Kallat and Reena Saini Kallat, Bharti Kher, Riyas Komu, Bose Krishnamachari, Nalini Malani, Manish Nai, Jagannath Panda, Madhvi Parekh, Manisha Parekh, Man Parekh, Mithu Sen, Sudarshan Shetty, Dayanita Singh, Madhvi Subramanian, and Thukral & Tagra.

Galleries that have exhibited throughout the past nine editions reported a noticeable energy and intensity, as well as a shift in visitor profile, with influential international collectors visiting the fair for the first time and a new generation of younger or emerging collectors present at this year’s fair.

In many cases, galleries commented on changing collecting attitudes, reporting a growing interest in Contemporary Art as well as Modern – particularly seeing installation, sculpture, new media and photography selling well. Architecture and design practitioners were also noted at the fair for the first time, making purchases for property developments.

Greater emphasis was placed in the public programme on profiling artists from South Asia, illustrating Jagpal’s commitment to developing India Art Fair’s role as a platform for the arts community, while conceiving programming specifically for local Indian audiences. A new series of talks entitled ‘I Know What You Did Last Summer’ put artists at the heart of the programme, and featured Hetain Patel, Nikhil Chopra, Lubna Chowdhary and Reena Saini Kallat.

A curated, dedicated exhibition space created for Projects for the first time, generated significant interest from visitors during the public days and offered an opportunity for engagement with large-scale, new media and walk-in installations.

Presenting partner BMW Group India presented the 17th BMW Art Car, created by internationally recognised American artist Jeff Koons. The BMW Art Cars or ‘Rolling Sculptures’ are original masterpieces of art that demonstrate an individual synthesis of artistic expression and automobile design. Since 1975, 19 artists have created Art Cars based on contemporary BMW automobiles of their times, all offering a wide range of artistic interpretations.

The NSIC Exhibition Grounds site was developed to refresh the visitor experience, featuring dedicated spaces for different programme sections, and significantly expanded education and non-profit partnership programme at ‘Puffin in the Park’ hosted by Penguin Random House and series of artist-led events in the re-designed Forum space.

The fair welcomed more than 900 students from schools, colleges and universities in New Delhi and from neighbouring states such as Haryana, Uttar Pradesh and Punjab, as well as a large number of international students.

Exhibitors commented on the refreshed and improved fair architecture, highlighting the significantly improved visitor experience with increased square footage for exhibition space, broader aisles, as well as numerous improvements to stand design including higher walls.

Jagdip Jagpal, Fair Director, said: “With my first India Art Fair, it was my intention to clarify the curatorial direction and set a new benchmark for the future. We have witnessed serious collecting from a fast-growing local market as well as significant engagement and acquisitions from international visitors and museum groups. Positive feedback has been shared across the board by exhibitors, collectors, the general public and colleagues working in the art scene on a hugely successful edition, building on the hard work of previous years.

I am particularly touched by the support our team has received from the local art scene here, especially the artists and non-profit organisations. Underlying this year’s event, is a sense of collaboration across the arts sector and real excitement for its future. With my team, I am already looking at how we can go further next year, particularly looking at how to work with the arts community to create a year-round support network that lasts beyond the fair dates.”

For the full press release, including quotes shared by exhibitors and artists, please click here.

India Art Fair will return to New Delhi, 31 January – 3 February 2019.

For further information please contact:

International Media
Lisa Hill at SUTTON | lisa@suttonpr.com | +44 (0)20 7183 3577

Indian Media
Gautami Reddy at India Art Fair | gautami@indiaartfair.in | +91 96 50056965

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Twitter: @India_ArtFair
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