As in most fraternities, the Indian art world has its own cliques, welcoming into its fold only those who create the art or those who understand its layered modalities. This long-standing exclusive is slowly evolving thanks to the work of The Art Appreciation Society (TAAS), founded by Tejshree Savara, legal advisor in art, antiques and cultural heritage, and Arjun Guleria, co-founder of the design and communication agency. , Beam & Words.
Growing up with parents who were art collectors, Savara was exposed to the art world from an early age. The holidays have always revolved around culturally stimulating experiences in museums and galleries, and she credits them to her continued interest over the years. “When you are surrounded by something of great ferocity and intensity, it is inevitable to fall in love with it,” she says. With a law degree in hand, she was able to combine her two skills by initiating a practice in art law in a leading law firm. As a lawyer specializing in art, antiques and cultural heritage, she rejoices in the belief that while she cannot create art, she can at least protect it.
Guleria, on the other hand, had no previous exposure to this area and was presented there by Savara, whom he has accompanied to art exhibitions over the years. His inexperience sparked conversations about the intimidating nature of the fine art, one that instilled a fear of judgment in asking the wrong questions or not knowing who to ask. They soon realized that there were many more like Guleria, of all ages and genders, who had a desire to explore this world but didn’t know how or where to start. This awareness led to the birth of TAAS, to make art accessible and encourage inclusiveness. By initiating conversations and questions, organizing guided tours of art exhibitions, organizing workshops led by experts and artists, as well as technical and theoretical series, they attract an interested audience of people inclined to the creation of all walks of life.
Bhavna Kakar, founder of Gallery Latitude 28, appreciates the knowledgeable and interested audience they attract – an audience that appreciates the experience, asks the right questions and comes back for more. Lifestyle brand writer and blogger Sumiran Annamaria Kashyap, a regular attendee of TAAS events, attributes their appeal to the immersive experience they provide by encouraging constant organic dialogue between audiences. Lively conversations, facilitated by dynamic curators like Shaunak Mahbubani, are the main reason litigation lawyer Arjun Narayan frequents these events.
Take away food
✥ Tejshree Savara brings knowledge of art, Arjun Guleria creates conversation around events
✥ They prefer to work with young and dynamic people who are known to create engaging and meaningful conversations around art
Events are free
Events and promotions are run entirely by volunteers
✥ They plan to include intangible works of art in the future – music, dance, film, among other mediums
✥ We can keep up to date with the latest news of their events via their Instagram page @theartappreciationsociety
Although Covid-19 has been a spoiler by causing many last-minute event cancellations, the number of attendees at TAAS events has increased dramatically. Above all, the art fraternity takes note of these young enthusiasts and future collectors. A recent collaboration took place with Terrain.art, the world’s first blockchain-based art ecosystem in India, who reached out to them after hearing about their work. At the end of September, an engaged group of about 20 participants took part in a curator-led guided tour and artist interaction at Bikaner House in Delhi, where over 100 works of art by 35 artists through mediums AI paint was presented.
Their first contact with digital art, Savara shares: “It’s really fascinating to explore and understand NFT / Crypto art and since this is a very recent art offering it would be even more interesting to see what direction this will take over the next few years! “
Despite many challenges, TAAS has gained a foothold in the esoteric ecosystem, with exciting plans for expansion and growth. Guleria sums it up best when he says: “I don’t think you can ever claim to know enough about the art world. And that, in my experience, is true for almost anything you are passionate about. TAAS events are currently free.