Art Bengaluru Collective 4.0 is by everyone for everyone

Breaking barriers and challenging the conventional elitism in the art industry, Art Bengaluru Collective (ABC) presents its 4.0 edition—an inclusive, open-to-all art extravaganza. This initiative focuses on bringing art closer to the masses, debunking the stereotype that it is an exclusive domain for the affluent or the art connoisseur.

Rasheed Kappan, a city-based journalist and cartoonist, in collaboration with actor-painter Ranji David, launched ABC with a mission: to democratize art access. They envisioned a vibrant, communal space where artists aren’t shackled by commissions and art seekers need not face the daunting walls of exclusivity. “At ABC we don’t charge any commission for artworks sold,” Kappan emphasizes, highlighting the collective’s artist-friendly model.

This new approach does more than just empower artists financially; it transforms traditional gallery spaces, dividing them among creative individuals. Kappan contrasts this to the more market-based atmosphere of the Santhe by offering artists the dignity of a gallery setting for their work to be exhibited.

The latest iteration of the event remains true to the collective’s core theme “of art, artistry, accessibility and affordability.” Occupying the three sections of the Rangoli Metro Art Centre—Vismaya, Chaya, and Belaku, ABC 4.0 sprawls out to visitors with an impressive array of over 250 works from upwards of 25 artists. This astonishing collection is a testament to ABC’s ever-growing network of creatives and art enthusiasts.

A true festival of the arts, attendees at ABC 4.0 can expect an experience far removed from the solemn silence of traditional galleries. “We wanted to make it like a live space, not just a static display,” says Rasheed, highlighting the collective’s innovative approach. True to his word, the Collective curates a variety of events within the galleries to spark casual yet profound interactions—ranging from poetry to book readings, live caricatures to on-the-spot paintings.

This bustling ecosystem allows for real-time engagement between artists and their audience. Curators, including Kappan himself, promise to play the role of informal narrators, introducing individuals to each artist and their work. Such interactions aim to not only build a rapport between the audience and the creators but to foster art appreciation and understanding.

The eclectic mix of participating artists guarantees an equally varied display of art. The walls will witness the creativity of talents such as Asha Krishankutty, Salmin Sheriff, Alok Algoankar, Gargi Verma, Lt Col Ramesh Ramaiah, Veena Priyaranjan, and Padmvathi Rao, each bringing their distinct styles and stories to the fore.

Open to the public from February 16, the grand launch of ABC 4.0 is scheduled for the evening of February 17, with CS Krishna Setty, former chairman of the Central and Karnataka Lalitkala Academies, doing the honors. The event, located at the Rangoli Metro Art Centre, will continue through February 18 until 6 pm. In keeping with its philosophy of inclusivity and democratization of art, entry is free to all.

In conclusion, ABC 4.0 stands as a physical manifestation of a growing movement—a movement that believes art should not be placed on a distant pedestal, but rather shared and celebrated across all strata of society. This event marks another stride toward a future where art, in its many forms and expressions, becomes a shared joy—a common language spoken by and available to everyone.

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