Some of us spent Holi at National Gallery of Modern Art yesterday. We had gone to see the exhibition by Balan Nambiar. The exhibition had drawings in Indian ink, charcoal, pastels and paintings in watercolour and oils. On display were also his indoor and outdoor sculptures in bronze, mild steel and stainless steel.
Being welcomed by the magnificent trees at NGMA, one was immediately touched by to a sense of quiet and beauty. Everything seemed like ‘art’ in this atmosphere.
Enthusiastically we wandered into the large mansion that housed the works of Balan Nambiar. The works created a pause and questions. A game started between the children to see how quickly they could find his name on the work. Then there was also reading the little label to his work and placing it in the timeline that makes most sense to them.
‘He did this before I was born!’
‘I was 1 year old when he made this’
‘Hey! I was born when he made this!’
‘My mother was born, when he made this!’
After initially wandering through the museum and getting a feel of the work, the children scattered in the space to draw some of the work by the artist in their journals.
Looking at his art work closely, we noticed new things we hadn’t noticed in our first looking.
We had had our fill and decided to go upstairs to see the regular collection. Just then, the artist walked into the space…. and there was a buzz of excitement and wonder that filled us. The artist was a real person!
Balan Nambiar, met each of the children, autographed their journals and even looked into their journals and was delighted by their interpretations of his work.
After this unplanned and beautiful interaction we had some delicious lunch at the Cafe. Rohit, a friend arranged a most delicious meal for us.
After lunch we made our way itno the Museum shop and a new learning moment opened up for us!
We helped the ‘uncle’ at the counter segregate ‘visitor-buttons’ and had our data on the kind of visitors that came in the month of February for the exhibition by Balan Nambiar.