From Institutions To Homegrown, Here Are The Most Happening Art Galleries In Delhi!by | February 03, 2020
Did you know that viewing art not only pleases your visual sensibilities but also serves as a stimulant for your mind, improves memory, introduces you to new geographical locations, increases your knowledge of history, and makes you more culturally aware? So why is it that we shy away from visiting art galleries that familiarise us with old established artists and introduce us to the exciting new installations and enterprises of the younger lot.
Years before Instagram became our go-to destination for cool, new artists, it was commonplace for art lovers, connoisseurs, and the regular public to head to art galleries in search of some visual stimulation. From great conversations about art history to the opportunity of owning an asset from the future, we introduce you to some of the finest art galleries in New Delhi that will open new artistic avenues. So get yourself on their mailing list, ask a friend to introduce you to the curator for those fantastic cocktail-fueled openings, and discover a new way of seeing the world.
Vadehra Art Gallery
Built as a platform to connect artists with art lovers, Vadehra Art Gallery was started in 1987 and has been the hub of modern artworks and installations in the city. The gallery can boast of influential names like MF Husain, Ram Kumar, SH Raza, Tyeb Mehta, and Akbar Padamsee as part of their founding years. Even today, some of the biggest names in the country are known to display their contemporary artworks at the gallery. In 1996, the gallery got into publishing and since then has contributed coffee table books, illustrated exhibition catalogues, artists’ monographs, and even picture books for kids pertaining to the Indian art world.
Arpana Fine Art Gallery
One of the few galleries belonging to a non-profit organisation, the Arpana Fine Art Gallery was founded in 1975 by eminent writer Ajeet Cour and painter Arpana Caur, as a place to promote young and downtrodden artists. The gallery picks unknown names and has been instrumental in helping them find their place and recognition in the adult world. The gallery is a part of the Academy of Fine Arts & Literature, a beautiful red brick building in the Siri Fort area.
Address: 4/6, Siri Fort Institutional Area, Delhi
Contact: 011 26498070
For more: Website
Delhi Art Gallery
The Delhi Art Gallery or DAG as it often called is one of the world’s largest repository of modern Indian art. With a focus on researching and documenting the works of twentieth-century artists, the gallery has been instrumental in helping artists across the country get their due credit. The gallery’s external activities include curation, publication, and filmmaking whereby they’ve been able to build interest in Indian art on a global platform. They also have gallery storefronts in Mumbai and New York and are a regular participant in various international art fairs. The gallery has also forayed into institutional building aiding in museum restoration and development with an association with the Archaeological Survey of India for the country’s first public-private museum initiative at the Red Fort called Drishyakala.
Dhoomimal Art Gallery
As India’s oldest private art gallery, the Dhoomimal Art Gallery in Connaught Place (now Rajiv Chowk) is well-established as a one-of-a-kind destination for art. As the legend goes, the gallery initially started as a stationery store in 1936, where artists would often pay with artworks instead of cash. The culmination of all these paintings gave birth to the Dhoomimal Art Gallery, a private viewing space for upcoming and established artists. Revered artists like Amrita Sher-Gil, Abdur Rahman Chugtai, Francis Newton Souza, Sailoz Mookherjea, Jamini Roy, Jagdish Swaminathan etc. have all been associated with the gallery.
Address: 8-A, Connaught Place, New Delhi-110001
For more: Website
From 1982 to 1988 artist Peter Nagy ran an art gallery named, Nature Morte in New York's East Village. Several years later in 1997, he reopened the gallery as a commercial space to represent Indian contemporary artists in New Delhi. Over the years, the gallery has become a space for experimental forms of art such as conceptual projects, lens-based installations etc. Partnering with art curator, Aparajita Jain in 2013 the gallery (and associated artists) have expanded to gain international recognition at international art fairs. The current multi-level space in Neeti Bagh fosters works by prominent Indian and south Asian artists.
Art Positive Gallery
From mammoth sculptures to online exhibitions, Art Positive Gallery in Lado Sarai is home to a burgeoning number of young and old Indian artists. Started by Anu Bajaj in 2005, the state-of-the-art gallery boasts of cutting edge art in varied modes, media, and prices, from across the country. Apart from astutely curated shows and masterclasses, the gallery works closely on personalised artist portfolios and helps in the selection, insurance, handling, care and most importantly, sale of the art online.
Address: F 213 B, Old M B Road, Lado Sarai, New Delhi
Contact: 011 41602545
For more: Website
Located in the urban art village, Lado Sarai, Exhibit 320 is a homegrown gallery that stands out due to its dynamic space and unconventional approach to engaging artists and their audience. With a focus on art that engages the audience, the exhibition space organises events that involve new talent as well as ideas along with a regular flow of seminars, lectures, and discussions.
With a motive to promote art beyond geographical borders, Talwar Gallery set up shop in New York in 2001, followed by a gallery in New Delhi in 2007. The gallery aims to promote Indian and Asian artists across the world and ensure that they're not categorised by religion, region or culture.
Art Alive Gallery
A bustling hub for art-related activities, Art Alive Gallery in South Delhi is constantly brimming with art lovers intrigued by the new crop of artists flocking the walls of the gallery. The gallery was started by Sunaina Anand in 2001 as a space to promote young talent and has been instrumental in bringing names like Suman Chandra, Patitapaban Ojha, and Divya Singh amongst others to the limelight. Space comprises of five standalone areas and hosts an array of lectures, discussions, and workshops on contemporary Indian art.
Founded by Renu Modi in 1989 on the recommendation of the prolific painter, MF Hussain himself, Gallery Espace is one of the most prestigious galleries the city has to offer. It also opened with the autobiographical works of the artist himself. The gallery works with a diverse range of interdisciplinary artists, some of the prominent names being Zarina Hashmi, Nilima Sheikh, Chitra Ganesh, Chintan Upadhyay, Waswo X Waswo with R. Vijay, Manisha Gera Baswani, Dilip Chobisa, and Samit Das.
Ojas Art Gallery
Derived from a Sanskrit word, Ojas can be described as the creative energy of the world. An apt name for a gallery that takes an innovative approach to Indian art, the Ojas Art Gallery is headed by Anubhav Nath and is a sprawling space that opens your horizons to new Indian artists.
Kiran Nadar Museum Of Art
Established by avid art collector Kiran Nadar, Kiran Nadar Museum of Art (KNMA) is a one-of-a-kind art museum spread over 34,000 square feet that exhibits modern and contemporary art from the subcontinent. A non-commercial and not-for-profit organisation that works with the aim to solely display art, the curator started with an intention to make her collection public but it has since grown to become an institutional space to give visibility to artists via seminars, lectures, and publications. Located in the Saket District Centre, the gallery’s claim to fame has been the 33-feet-tall mushroom cloud by Subodh Gupta that was located in the centre of the mall and was a part of the museum’s intriguing line-up. The museum is temporarily closed for renovations.
Featured Image: Kiran Nadar Museum Of Art