At the sixth edition of the India Art Fair, there were probably half as many photographers as there were makeshift art galleries from different parts of the world. For a photographer, a visit to an art fair of a global scale can be awe-inspiring, overwhelming and baffling at the same time.
As I walked through the many stalls in the sprawling grounds of a south Delhi suburb, I asked myself a question: how do I capture someone else’s story, one that is already etched on a canvas or an installation?
One of the most intriguing works was by Narendra Yadav – ‘That original may also be a reflection’. Portraits were hung upside down on a wall, with a mirror in the centre that also reflected upside down. Next to it was a dark room. You walk in by yourself. Stand in the centre. A mirror rolls out and you see eight reflections of your self. The display stays for a few seconds and you’re left wondering how long this would last.
The four-day art festival features some 1,000 artists in a custom-made tent spread over an area of 20,000 square metres. Since the first one in 2008, it has become one of South Asia’s leading art fairs.
Neha Kirpal, founder and director of the India Art Fair, told Reuters in an interview that Christie’s debut auction in Mumbai in December had been a “booster shot” for the art fair this year.