It was an awakening of a different kind as the young and enterprising artist – Punam Salechaa – displayed her paintings and sculptures on the Buddha at Mumbai’s prestigious Jehangir Art Gallery on Thursday night.
Artist and designer Nisha Jamvwal (looking resplendent in a red gown embellished with roses) presented and curated this exhibition, titled: THE AWAKENING – An homage to Buddha.
Lord Buddha’s famous words “Sangham Sharanam” (Sublime Togetherness), are what inspired this petite artist and helped her metamorphose he creations from mere art to a “Meditative state,” she reveals.
Wearing a colourful Ritu Kumar ensemble, Punam takes us through the gallery and explains the finer nuances of her art and craft. Apart from her paintings, she has also created huge sculptures by using shards of metal that overlap with each other. “This technique echoes the metaphor of layered thought, complex lives and the simplicity and harmony that exist within to be delved into and unfurled,” explains Punam.
And as for her canvases, the mighty Banyan tree with its long, flowing roots – each with an individual identity growing out of the ‘One’ big tree – is a recurring idiom to underline the fact that “We are all One”.
Coming in to view the exhibition and support the new artist were Her Highness Princess Asha Raje Gaekwad of Baroda (below)….
…..model / actress Dipanita Sharma and her husband Dilsher Atwal.
Dipanita looked stunning in a saffron and white saree by designer Masaba Gupta, a perfect choice for an exhibition which honours the spiritual.
Actress Dolly Thakore also wore a lovely hand-woven saree and a simple yet stunning necklace to off-set the garment.
Singer Penaz Masani made a public appearance after quite a while and doesn’t look a day older than when she first started off her career in the late Eighties.
Also spotted at the event were hat-designer Farhad Billimoria and his wife, designer Amy Billimoria…
…..ex-model Gautam Kapoor, who came out of hibernation after a very long time….
……..and Mumbai’s very own jazz enthusiast, Prakash Thadani. Prakash is the guy who organizes a big jazz event every year and this year, he’s planning it for end of November or December.
The U.S Trade Commissioner, Richard Rothman and his wife Tabu, were also at the event. They are regulars on the party circuit in Mumbai and are very active among the expat community.
Of course, a party in Mumbai would not be complete without Gilles Amsallem, the Frenchman who organizes the much awaited French Tuesdays, every month. (MissMalini will also be writing for the French Tuesdays website on a regular basis.)
And finally, to infuse a bit of fun into the event, my friend Sameer Sharma strikes a pose which is rather apt for the occasion….
But his “nirvana” moment was in meeting the other, more gorgeous Sharma – Dipanita Sharma. “Clearly my meditation paid off,” he says with a naughty chuckle…!