One of the best things about this city is that it continuously cherishes, celebrates and preserves culture. Art lovers never cease to do their bit to keep creativity alive in every form. Which is why one sees the number of art spaces forever increasing. Recently, a new name got added to the list — TheySee Art Gallery, in the Camp area of the city.
Nestled between bakeries, markets and schools at Dastur Meher Road, an area boasting ancient history, Parsi-Iranian architecture and rows of lovely quaint houses, TheySee Art Gallery (TAG), is not your regular gallery. It is touted to be city’s first art gallery-cum-coworking-space.
A brainchild of Alet Viegas (founder Blackbean Engagement), Shankar Mridha (life coach and art curator) and Rahul Chakraborty (a watercolour artist), who share a similar vision of intertwining talent and technology to support creativity, TAG collaborates with Jumbish, an organisation co-owned by Mridha and Chakraborty that curates and promotes art.
“Playing on the word ‘desi’, we wanted to communicate that we lean towards local talent within India. TheySee literally means what the good folks that visit us ‘see’,” says Mridha who adds they want to break away from typical art studios. “TheySee aims to host workshops, display original art, and provide a platform for creators, artists, and hobbyists to experiment with their medium. But that’s only half of what they do. The other half shares the community table with fellow start-ups, solo-preneurs, independent contractors, and freelance owners to create an ecosystem that nurtures and benefits. Together as an art and co-working space, TheySee looks towards developing a symbiotic relationship between shared workspaces, startups, and makers of art,” quips Viegas, who is aware of the tremendous impact technology will have on all fields in the coming years. “Art too will see a disruption, and we intend in helping our teams cross the finish line when it comes to creative execution using technology,” he adds.
With so many art spaces already in existence, the idea behind TAG is to provide a platform for the diverse forms to create and deliver exciting and memorable art experiences. “TheySee will be the face for the artists to reach an audience which is otherwise not reachable — the ‘common man.’ When visual art like paintings, sculptures, photography, videography, doodles, sketches, etc, is aligned with the vibrations of the other art expressions and performing arts like dance, music, poetry, stand-up, theatre etc, it creates magic. The objective is to take art to the people and for that, various workshops and experimental projects would find place at TheySee,” informs Mridha.
Some of activities which TAG has already conducted and is planning to organise in the coming future are Calligraphy Workshop for kids and adults, Painting Party to trigger the passion and create a sense of achievement for people who always wanted to paint but couldn’t, Voice Culture and Effective ‘Riyaz’ for various genres of music, Baul & Abhang — a combination of two mystical singing styles from two different regions of India connecting the human vibrations, Communication and Art Workshop, and so on.
“Our USP, “says Viegas, “is that we are a co-working space plus an art studio. Displaying the work is only a natural deliverable. We have entrepreneurs, creative artists, performers work out the space between 7am to 3pm, and the gallery is open throughout the day to experience the amalgamation of a working environment to transform into an art gallery after 6 pm.”
Dastur Meher Road and its rich heritage makes the local environment quite interesting; right in the centre of Camp and in the line of Pune’s favourite JJ Garden Vada Pav, and Irani cafe — Yezdan.
But amidst all the galleries in the city, what differentiates TAG from others? Answers Mridha, “Leveraging technology to deliver, reach and connect is missing in traditional galleries. We don’t want to compete or stand-out without purpose. Our focus is to grow the audience, connect with them in a language they understand, and educate them on how art improves the community.”
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Visit TheySee Art Gallery, on 860, Dastur Meher Road, Camp, on weekdays 4-9 pm and on weekends 10 am-9 pm