India Today Art Awards: Full list of winners

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A slew of artists from various fields were awarded at the India Today Art Awards, held in Kolkata on Thursday (December 13).

The event was marked open by India Today group chairperson and editor-in-chief Arun Poorie, who in his address, said the world would be colourless, soulless and mindless without art.

READ | Without art, world would be colourless, soulless, mindless: Aroon Purie at India Today Art Awards

Here’s the full list of winners:

#1. Artist of the year

Subodh Gupta

The artist wins for a remarkable year in which he opened the eyes of the world at the Art Basel to the joys of sharing food in the age of displacement and then stunned them again with a display of his oeuvre at the Monnaie de Paris where he transformed seemingly insignificant objects and experiences to offer a glimpse of the infinite cosmos.

#2. Retrospective of the year

Vivan Sundaram at the Kiran Nadar Museum of Modern Art

The artist wins for Step Inside and You Are No Longer A Stranger, the first-ever comprehensive overview of his multifaceted practice over 52 years as a painter, sculptor, installer, conceptualist, collaborator, interlocutor, archivist, and video-maker whose work remains laden with political and historical references, embracing both Indian and global contexts.

#3. Solo exhibition of the year

Ranjani Shettar at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York

The artist wins for the outstanding Seven Ponds and A Few Raindrops, where her shape shifting stainless steel elements covered in tamarind-stained muslin speak evocatively of the threatened natural environment of rural India, showing her ethical and aesthetic commitment to the natural universe.

#4. Performance artist of the year

N Pushpamala

The photo and visual artist wins for consistently pushing the boundaries of art to comment on the times we live in, whether it is making rasam for an audience dressed as Mother India in Gauri’s Urgent Saaru, a tribute to her slain friend, or being one of 47 photographers telling their story at the FotoFest Biennial In Houston, USA.

#5. Collector of the year

Abhishek Poddar

He wins for being a dedicated art collector for over 30 years, providing friendship, patronage and creative freedom to some of India’s leading artists, including Tyeb Mehta, Vasudeo S Gaitonde, Ganesh Pyne, Meera Mukherjee and Bhupen Khakhar, and putting together one of India’s most important private collections of folk and tribal art, textiles, craft and design. The forthcoming Museum of Art and Photography in Bengaluru will house his own extensive collection alongside others and is expected to open in 2020.

#6. Curator of the year

Arshiya Lokhandawala, India Re-worlded, Gallery Odyssey, Mumbai

She wins for India Re-Worlded, an ambitious survey of modern and contemporary art in which 70 artists, ranging from Akbar Padamsee to Zarina Hashmi, interpret what freedom means to them. From assassinations to riots, the show’s broad sweep encapsulates 70 moments when Indian artists liberated themselves from their earlier colonial position.

#7. Emerging Artist of the Year

Rajyashri Goody

The anthropologist-turned-artist wins for her extraordinary work where the personal is political, and where the visual chronicling of her Dalit family’s relationship with food is accompanied by recipes accessed from Dalit literature. Her breakout exhibition, Eat With Great Delight, at Clark House Initiative, has put the contentious question of Dalit identity front and centre of contemporary art.

#8. New Media Artist of the Year

Shilpa Gupta

She wins for For, In Her Tongue I Cannot Hide, a piece of immersive sound art exhibited at the Edinburgh Arts Festival, representing voices of 100 poets, the oldest from the eighth century to the youngest, Burmese writer Maung Saungkha, who was arrested by the authorities in 2016 at the age of 22. It was inspired by her 2011 work called Someone Else, which brought together books by authors who’d written under pseudonyms.

#9. Best Artistic Collaboration of the Year

Gauri Gill and Museum of Metropolitan Art, New York

The artist wins for Acts of Appearance, a series of vivid colour photographs for which she worked closely with members of an Adivasi community in Jawhar district, Maharashtra. Her collaborator-subjects are renowned for their papier-mâché objects, including traditional sacred masks and in these pictures they engage in everyday village activities while wearing new masks, made expressly for this body of work, which depict living beings with the physical characteristics of humans, animals, or valued objects.

#10. Public Art Initiative of the Year

Jawahar Kala Kendra, Jaipur

Its director Pooja Sood and ADG Anuradha Singh win for reinventing a space designed in 1993 by the late great Charles Correa, that was subsequently consigned to oblivion, and has now become a hub for museum quality exhibitions, cutting across a range of genres-from new media, popular culture and photography to architecture, painting and design — with an outreach that has seen it becoming part of Jaipur’s increasingly rich and diverse cultural life.

#11. Lifetime Achievement Award

Ganesh Haloi

The Jamalpur born artist wins for his lifelong dedication to painting, in a career that began as resident artist of the Archaeological Survey of India where he documented the cave paintings of Ajanta. Since the 60s, he has metamorphosed into a premier landscape artist and eventually built up an abstract way of depicting nature that goes beyond visual documentation and conveys the poetry of the physical world, harkening back to his lost homeland of Bangladesh.