“You should take up art to enjoy it…do not think of it as a commercial prospect,” Jyoti Kalra
Recently awarded by Dr Harshvardhan (Central Government Minister) and S Gandhi for her services in the field of art and culture, Jyoti Kalra is no stranger to the world of arts. She is driven by the passion to promote the rich talent that lies in our country today. In line with the same, the dynamic lady has conceptualised Millennium Art Fusion. It is a unique initiative where there will be more than 200 visual artistes, including painters, sculptors, photographers and graphic artistes and around 100 painters painting live with the beat of the music in the background.
In a free wheeling chat, Jyoti shares some valuable insights about the art world, speaks about the event and her gallery ‘Uchaan’ as well as gives advice to budding artists.
Could you tell me a little bit about the Millennium Art Fusion, I believe it is going to happen in February.
Yes, it is taking place from 2nd to 5th February. With Millennium Art Fusion, we are merging three art forms, where there will be the painting exhibition, performing arts presentation as well as live painting competition. It is all going to be together, that is why we have kept the name as Millennium Art Fusion.
It is happening on a huge scale where we are showcasing different kinds of artists under one roof. There will be around 100 stalls and about 200 hundred artists. Disabled children will be displaying their painting skills as well.
What was the idea behind it?
When I thought about it, I realised that various art events keep on happening on a huge scale in Delhi, but that is not the case in Gurgaon, Haryana. Even though there is a great amount of talent here, people still go to Delhi and Bombay. Such a kind of event has never happened before. The main concept behind it was to give the artists from Harayana a platform. Later we felt, why should we only restrict it to a place, artists should come from all over India and get an avenue as well.
There is also a section called ‘Rising Stars’ where around 25 of them will be displaying their work free of cost. We want our young artists to get an opportunity to showcase their talent.
You are also an artist, right?
Yes, I used to be an artist long time ago. Since the past 3 years I have been painting less, but before that I used to paint a lot. I have a guru who advised me to put my passion and energy in organising shows so that I can promote artists. Keeping this in mind, I have reduced my painting and have kept it as a hobby.
What inspired you towards painting and artistry?
I have been painting since I was a little child. The reason why I am working with artists is because I always feel that I need to be surrounded with them. Even if I am not painting myself, it feels nice to be in the company of painting and arts. I also have a gallery in Gurgaon called Uchaan.
Uchaan is also into social awareness through art, could you tell me a little bit about that?
Uchaan, as the name suggests gives a platform for young and budding artists. This is what I am working towards. Some artists do not know which track they are going towards. For them, we conduct workshops from time to time. We make them interact with senior artists, so that they get the right direction.
As you deal with so many artists, what can you tell us about the current scenario of art in India?
Initially, arts was for limited people, but now, there is a lot of awareness among the buyers. People prefer buying paintings of young budding artists as well. They understand that the artists who paint have many emotions running through them, and that they get attached to their work. So the buyers carry on the respect and keep the painting with love too.
Today, there are a lot of people moving ahead with their art. It also works like therapy. While interacting with the buyers, I have noticed that they get connected with the art, get lost in that world and by the end of it have to buy the painting. It is good for the buyers because it is like an investment. Today, the painting of senior artists sell in lakhs and crores. Thanks to that as well, there is a good market and understanding today.
And what advice can you give young budding artists?
Art is very important today and it is great that our young and budding artists are getting involved in it. But they should not take it up commercially. It cannot become someone’s bread and butter. You should take up art as a hobby and therapy so that you can enjoy it. If you feel that you are going to earn from it, there are many struggles that might come along which could lead to depression. If you leave everything for the sake of artistry and are not able to earn, problems arise. You should take up art to enjoy it. You should not think of it as a commercial prospect.
Side by side, you should have another profession. It is then that you can bring out the feelings in art. When you are happy from inside, you can really come out with something spectacular.