Jaipur | India's first sculpture park
Art Radar interviews Peter Nagy, the curator of India’s First Sculpture Park at Madhavendra Palace, Jaipur. This unique collaboration of private enterprise and the State Government is a juxtaposition of contemporary art and traditional architecture.
This one-of-a-kind initiative with artworks by both Indian and international artists, displayed inside and outside, is on display at the Palace until November 2018.
The Sculpture Park (PDF download) is situated within the environs of the Madhavendra Palace, constructed in the late 1800s at the Nahargarh Fort, which stands at the edge of the Aravalli Hills, overlooking the city of Jaipur. It was formally launched by the Chief Minister of Rajasthan Vasundhara Raje on 10 December 2017, and is a unique collaboration between the Government of Rajasthan, Saat Saath Arts and a number of corporate sponsors.
The two-storey palace is a maze-like, symmetrical structure with nine separate apartments, suites and rooms, all connected by innumerable corridors – ideally suited for its transformation into India’s first contemporary sculpture exhibition. Commenting on this new avatar of the Madhavendra Palace, the Chief Minister said:
For many years now, people have been coming to this beautiful palace – they come, they look and go away, but to keep this space living, it is important to merge it with today.
Curated by Peter Nagy, Director of Nature Morte Art Limited, The Sculpture Park showcases the works of 15 Indian and nine international artists (PDF download) including Arman, James Brown, Stephen Cox, Anita Dube, Subodh Gupta, Jitish Kallat, Reena Saini Kallat, Bharti Kher, Mrinalini Mukherjee, Ravinder Reddy and Thukral & Tagra. Nagy is himself an artist having studied at the Parson’s School of Design (New York) and a gallery owner, having run Gallery Nature Morte first in New York’s East Village and later in New Delhi. He has lived and worked in India since 1992 and conceived The Sculpture Park to bring together contemporary and traditional art in an alternative context, breaking away from the white cube exhibition space that we have inherited from the western canon. As Chief Curator and Exhibition Designer of this project, he has been able to synthesise his varied interests in art, architecture and décor – in a conflation of the past and the present.
The Sculpture Park is on view from 11 December 2017 to November 2018 at The Madhavendra Palace, Nahargarh Fort, Nahargarh Road, Jaipur, 302002.
Image: Arman, ‘The Day After’, 1984, burned furniture cast in bronze, dimensions variable. Courtesy The Arman Marital Trust. Photo: Dhruv Malhotra.