The past week, we at Bon Art had shifted to Dubai. It was a memorable experience. The gallery got its makeover in New Delhi with the help of the painters.
We are surprised by Dubai; it’s a rich city. It has a plethora of people. They are quite conservative when it comes to art. Yes, they like to haggle over prices.
The city has an all-female taxi driver network. From the airport the taxis have a female chauffer. Immediately my mother was at ease. These drivers unlike the other male Indian chauffeurs do not divulge where they are from. All they tell us is that they are running the taxis for their Sheikh Mohammed al Makhtum.
Dubai is a city which invests huge sums of money. It does this in an honest way, yet it being on the desert is quite garish. The architecture is modern so more ergonomic than aesthetically pleasing.
The airport, the shopping malls and the World Trade Center venue are very beautiful. We visited mainly the downtown areas.
There are many fast food/gourmet eating joints here. The cuisines covered include Japanese, Italian ,French and more. Chez Michel, Pizza Express and many other joints are there. They also have food trucks like in the United States of America. The food trucks have a lot of media coverage with the help of shows like” Eat Street”.
Over the past year our art collection has grown, at a remarkable pace. We have sold much art.The art is being bought and sold. These were in high demand in Dubai. Unlike the masters, in the emerging art the most recent painting of the artist garners the best sales.
We had a stand which was opposite to the Dubai Art Fans. These were a collection of about 35 artists, who had to share space and had only 1/3 of a wall each to showcase their work. So one can imagine it was quite lively. With these artists fighting for space and lowering their price of the art works.
There is a demand these days, for realistic figurative art, portraits and fashion statements.
We at Bon Art believe, art should be affordable yet awe inspiring. Dubai was the right city to visit.
Many people asked if the art we have is good as an investment. We believe that the going rates of senior artists are growing hugely. Also look for quality paintings by upcoming artists which perhaps will be a good investment.
Dubai during April has very pleasant weather. The fish there is excellent. The fish and chips from Giraffe of London was delicious and it was haddock. The breakfast menu was interesting.The buffet breakfast had many dairy items from the Arab world and also a Continental breakfast. A hearty English breakfast with bacon and eggs it was not. Nor the French Croque Monseuir!
The Dubai art scene is very competitive now. The last decade has certainly changed things. With hundreds of galleries opening, the prices have come down a lot.
Dubai is cosmopolitan in flavor. There are many good looking people and celebrities. It is quite a welcome change from the prudish Delhi we all love and miss.
The art galleries , were from around the world. There was a small Indian corner and we would visit them often. We had to furnish the stall, so we bought chairs and other items in the IKEA nea
r the venue. These chairs we even sent back to Delhi.
With Dubai being scarcely populated and having a great port open for trading purposes,the people here lack nothing.
The supermarket was full of ice cream even kulfi and hot chocolate fudge from India.
The metro to the Mall of Dubai has a huge space. It is quite monumental. The mall exit brings you to the first floor.
It is beautiful, but Dubai impressed me with its architecture and cosmopolitan nature. A few years down the line I believe the city will do better. It is an all-out tourist destination and one which is ahead of the times.
The art galleries of Indian origin were mainly from Mumbai. There were also, two freelance artists from Delhi. The event would be from 2 pm to 9pm everyday , so it was quite tiring siting there. The people here were very pleasant and contacts were made which in all honesty was the highlight of the event.
What I learned from the art fair, is that in order to sell outside India you must have European themes. The west remains the biggest market for art and we at Bon art will encourage our artists to make such art.There were many local artists from Dubai. The sheikhs were present and some even spoke Hindi saying as a child he lived near an Indian market and learnt hindi with his employees.It added a lovely touch to our trip at the World Art Fair.