Monday, April 27, 2015

Gangtok finally makes some space for art

There is finally some good news for art aficionados in Sikkim with the first Contemporary Art and Photo Gallery opening here at the Star Cinema Hall building on MG Marg. The gallery, “It’s Happening”, was officially inaugurated on 19 March. On the ground floor is the art gallery where paintings by local artists are on display for sale. The floor above houses photographs by local artists. While Oviya Arts Circle maintains the art gallery, Sunil Lama of Imago Creative Studio is in charge of the photo exhibition.

President of Oviya Arts Circle, Dhiraj Pradhan informs that the main purpose of opening the art gallery is to promote local talents as well as provide a platform for them. There is growing interest in the arts in Sikkim nowadays and a lot of local artists are coming forward, he says. He adds that the gallery has been getting positive response from the locals and tourists.
Earlier, OAC used to run a small art gallery near the UD&HD Department office, but unfortunately, it didn’t work out too well due to lack of response from the people. However, the new facility is more spacious and more conveniently located, and this, coupled with the support of locals as well as the hard work of the OAC members, the new gallery is set for a positive run this time, adds Mr. Pradhan.  
The paintings are all on sale and range from Rs 1,000 to Rs 30,000. The gallery is open for anyone who is interested to display their work. “We are also planning to conduct an exhibition cum sale for locals from time to time. Around 80 paintings are on display in the art gallery [ground floor],” informs Mr. Pradhan. OAC has around 51 members, including students, at present.
Chief Promoter for It’s Happening, Sunil Lama, says that the gallery aims to be an art hub for all kinds of creative work. “An art and photo gallery was the need of the hour for Gangtok since we had none which is why we started this initiative. There is no dearth of artists in Sikkim but what they lack is exposure,” he says.
He further informs that the gallery welcomes all forms of art whether it is pottery, music and people can also keep pickles for sale here.

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