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ZARAH: Celebrating Art
This is an interview with the founders of the Zarah Art gallery. An Art Exhibition Gallery.
Interviewer: So you both are the people behind Zarah? How was Zarah brought about?
Archie: Zarah actually began as an idea. I have been photographing seriously for almost 6 years now and yet people rarely want to feature me or showcase my work because of my age. I have been called everything from a Sunday Photographer to a Tourist by the so called Dinosaurs of Indian Photography. And I knew that I am not the only one stuck in this but I had an option of doing something which others might not. Barnita was working with me at that time and the main concept behind Zarah was her idea, to showcase up and coming Photographers, Artists, Sculptors and the whole shebang.
Interviewer: Wait, how old are you guys?
Barnita: (chuckles) We’re both 20 give or take a few months.
Interviewer: So how difficult was it setting out with an idea like this at your age?
Barnita: It was quite difficult in the beginning, people who were not even going to be associated with us had so many questions to ask us. We had almost no credibility and it felt like the two of us were against the world.
Archie: The funny part was that we even had people who were initially very interested but shied away looking at our faces. I almost felt like a new age version of Medusa the way people shied away from us. (Laughs)
Interviewer: I can see how you silenced your critics. Anyway from our own words tell us how successful was the exhibition, Srishti, last year?
Barnita: We had 25 participants. 13 Photographers and 12 painters. We had received almost 50 entries but had to turn down others due to the lack of space. We had to hold the exhibition in a private basement in a very difficult to find place because nobody was willing to give us a space. Yet we had over 250 visitors in a time sandwiched between RakshaBandhan and Independence Day.
Interviewer: I hear that you’ve added two more members into your core team. How does it feel going from 2 to 4?
Archie: (Laughs) You make it sound as if we had babies. Yes yes it has definitely been a good thing for us. Takes a little pressure off our shoulders. We can certainly focus on a lot more things than last year due to the addition of Ashutosh and Shivangi and also we can reach out to a lot more people. They have been an useful addition to our team.
Interviewer: So what all can be expected from this year’s exhibition? The theme is Tattva I guess. Tell us more about it!
Barnita: Well we have taken quite a big risk this time. We’ve ventured out into the proper Delhi. Almost into the hub of art and culture of Delhi. We are doing this year’s exhibition in Jai Bharat Centre, Hauz Khas Village.
Shivangi: And as for Tattva. Just like they did it last year, we’re doing a thematic exhibition again this year. The need for the theme is that since most of us don’t have huge projects to showcase or display we will display according to the theme which makes the entire exhibition flow beautifully from start to finish. Broadly classifying Tattva we have six themes: Air, Earth, Fire, Water, Spirit and Shadow.
Interviewer: In the long list of galleries and exhibitions what does Zarah provide to make it stand out?
Ashutosh: Well first of allwe 4 are ourselves mostly upcomingartists and photographers and we are helping other upcoming talents such as ourselves to help them go forward with their Art!
Not only do they get to exhibit, but their work will be published in a magazine we plan on launching soon along with our online portal.
Also Zarah is a non-profit initiative as we work towards the expansion of Art and not en cashing of it. We at Zarah, aim to provide these young people a support system by someone of their own age who would understand their fears and aspirations.
Interviewer: So what do you see for Zarah 5 years down the line?
Archie: Well we have big things planned for Zarah. Maybe go international at some point of time. Get foreign artists and photographers to display with us. Someday maybe we even get to host solo exhibitions of certain participants. We still want to keep doing this for our fraternity and for all the people who began just like us.
Interviewer: So tell us the details for this year’s exhibition!
Shivangi: Taking place at Jai Bharat Centre, 1, Hauz Khas Village.
Ashutosh: And we are still accepting entries for the exhibition. You can just check out the event details here – https://www.facebook.com/events/226310720821249/ and send in the entries to firstname.lastname@example.org
Archie: We’re looking forward to all of you being there and making it a big success. Thanks for having us.