The opening has finally come and gone. Much anxiety and relief pursued by much merriment and speculation. In light of some silly snafus, one doesn’t realise how many details there are to cover, from constantly rearranging paintings, to making sure the flowers don’t flop. Anticipating the freezing rain, the idea of serving Kashmiri tea with samosas and mini desi sliders from Gerrard Street was just genius! (The latter were destroyed by the crowd - DEFINITELY making them a fixed feature for future events.)
Reading the expressions of the uncles trickling in was so exciting! Especially when it came to Bajrang’s paintings, Savarth and Love The Poison. Obviously, the latter’s surreal, dark almost vicious image did get a lot of attention; there was detailed analysis as to how/why the concept of a woman being licked by two lascivious serpents came to represent the apparent hypocrisy of society’s expectations of women. The video projection at the entrance served to illustrate the artist’s creative process - the intense colours that inspire him contained within the surrounding walls of his room, and his technique of drawing and painting with surprising detail with the limited movement of his left hand. It’s as if he discovered the micro-pointillism of classical miniature painting all on his own.
Each painting told a story within a story and each visitor had their own interpretation. Apart from known faces of friends and associates and the guests they brought along, it was wonderful to see drop-ins from the neighbourhod itself. I’m happy to feel a part of it, with Doug Fisher popping in to offer support from the Cabbagetown BIA. He told me about the fantastic MJG Gallery up the road, so it’s great to have a fellow purveyor of art on Parliament Street.
All in all, a fun night, and a great beginning for the gallery in my shaky, rather over-enthused (hopefully) capable hands.