Pooja Goyal:

Chandigarh, 29th March 2019:

The Punjab Art Initiative (PAI) has announced the opening of its 2ND Edition at VR Punjab. Details of PAI were given at a press conference addressed by PAI’s Curator Sumi Gupta, and Bheem Malhotra Chairman, Chandigarh Lalit Kala Akademi. The press meet was also attended by National level artists -Gogi Saroj Pal – a 74-year- old artist who has a number of awards including the National Award of the Lalit Kala Akademi to her credit, Farhad Hussain a recipient of the Nasreen Mohamedi scholarship and Sudip Roy who has his collections as part of Museum of Sacred Art, Belgium, Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata, Indian Embassy, USA & many more.

Part of a successful roster of pan-Indian, award winning art shows that include Dumas Art Project (Est. 2013), Whitefield Art Collective (Est. 2016) and Madras Art Guild (Est. 2019) that are supported by Virtuous Retail as part of its connecting communities© program, PAI will reinforce Punjab’s position as one of India’s premier art and culture destinations. PAI 2019 is additionally supported by the Yog Foundation.

The opening on March 29th included the unveiling of The VR Art Car 2019, a work by artist M. Senathipati, President of Cholamandal Artists’ Village, Chennai. This was followed by an exclusive viewing of works in association with Chandigarh Lalit Kala Akademi, as well as works by Gogi Saroj Pal, Farhad Hussain, Diwan Manna and Manjot Kaur. A highlight of the opening night was a Live Art Performance by renowned artist Sudip Roy.

PAI 2019, a dedicated month of artistic immersion, will turn VR Punjab into a hub of artistic activity. An ensemble of installations, curated through partnerships with leading institutions and eminent artists will be on display. This year the collective has collaborated with Government College of Art, Chandigarh, The College of Architecture, Chandigarh, Chandigarh Lalit Kala Akademi, Government College of Fine Arts, Kumbakonam, Government College of Fine Arts, Chennai, Bharathiar Palkalaikoodam, Puducherry and Cholamandal Artists’ Village, Chennai

The month-long program that goes on till April 28th, will also have an Art Bazaar in association with Vanity Box, a Baisakhi special – Children’s Art Competition, a Baisakhi special food and music Festival Food Tadka showcasing a special installation marking the festival, Punjab in Focus online photography contest along with Art Cinema featuring “Frida”, a movie on the life of the artist Frida Kahlo.

Speaking about PAI 2019, Sumi Gupta (Curator) said: “Public art has the power to enhance and transform spaces and our broader living environments. The incredible response to PAI is a strong reflection of how we have been able to connect with the local community and bring art into people’s everyday life. We are pleased to be back in the Tricity for the second time with our annual showcase”

PAI aligns with Virtuous Retail’s approach that focuses on creating user friendly city centres both through the art of place-making and through Connecting Communities© through a range of multidisciplinary events and initiatives.

Virtuous Retail has been the presenting partner for PAI since its launch in 2017 and a strong supporter of all art forms. Across its many centres in India, Virtuous Retail houses an impressive collection of permanent installations by renowned artists, including the Jal Tapi (VR Surat) by Padma Shri Paresh Maity, Synergy (VR Bengaluru) by Dimpy Menon, Seeds On The Left Bank Of The River (VR Bengaluru) by Murali Cheeroth, The Bodhisattva (VR Chennai) by Satish Gupta amongst many others.

VR Punjab hosts Punjab Art Initiative as part of its local Connecting Communities© initiative, an ongoing project that aims to encourage civic pride, strengthen the local economy and enhance Punjab’s image.

Speaking of PAI and the VR Art initiatives, Pankaj Renjhen, COO, Virtuous Retail South Asia (VRSA) said, “We are happy to host Punjab Art Initiative as it dovetails into our philosophy of bringing the most enriching and exclusive experiences to the discerning audience of Chandigarh. This complements the shopping experience we offer with exclusive brands like H&M & Zara amongst others, that makes us the largest and most compelling fashion and F&B destination in the Tricity. VR continues to redefine the spatial retail experience for consumers by adding art and culture to the mix.”

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