A team of nine artists in Gujarat has drawn a 9,000-square-foot mural in a factory shed in Vadodara, celebrating the theme of “Vibrant Gujarat”. The mural, painted at the new Art Home Project Space situated on the premises of Gujarat Industrial Development Corporation (GDIC), will be thrown open for public viewing today, 18 February, 2009.
The artists behind the project emphasise that it has no links with Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and his Vibrant Gujarat campaign. “There is nothing political about the mural,” says Somu Desai, who led the team of young artists who drew the mural. “We are recognising the fact that in this time of worldwide recession, the economy of Gujarat is doing very well.”
Drawn in just 20 days, the mural is the first of Art Home Project Space’s experimental work and will be open for public viewing till 18th March. The Delhi based art curator and critic Johny ML, who came up with the idea of a mural, was also keen to distance it from Modi and the Bharatiya Janata Party. “It is shorn of any political association,” he says. “I thought a mural would be a good way to inaugurate this space that will be exclusively devoted to experimental art.”
Along with the state’s folk and dance traditions, the Nano car project by the Tata group and a portrait of Ratan Tata feature prominently in the mural. Desai says he saw the mural project as an opportunity to bring students from art colleges in smaller towns into the mainstream. Five young artists who worked on the mural are graduates of the BA Mehta Kala Mahavidyalaya, situated in Amalsad in Navsari district of Gujarat.