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Inlaks Fine Arts Award: Five emerging Indian practitioners selected for 2013 award
Abul Hisham, This land belongs to Mr. Abdul haque & his sisters, 2012. Acrylic, pastel and 300 gsm paper cuttings on paper, 60 x 72 in. Photo: Courtesy of Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation.

MUMBAI.- The Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation was established in 1976 by Indoo Shivdasani, a leading international Indian businessman, as a permanent platform for his philanthropic activities. The Foundation focuses on providing scholarships, grants and awards in any field to outstanding young Indians to develop their professional, scientific, artistic and cultural abilities both abroad and in India. The Inlaks India Foundation, the Indian arm of The Inlaks Shivdasani Foundation, grants annual awards in India for emerging practitioners of the fine arts, sports and theatre.

The tenth edition of the Fine Arts Award will be awarded on 6th February with a keynote lecture from eminent international critic and art historian Robert Storr, Dean, School of Art, Yale University. The award includes a grant as well as a residency programme, and the nominees were chosen by a jury of eminent Indian artists and arts professionals, including gallerist Mortimer Chatterjee, co-founder of the artists’ initiative Open Circle, Tushar Joag, sculptor Shilpa Gupta and artists Manisha Parikh and Jaideep Mehrotra.

The Inlaks Fine Arts Award is recognised as India’s longest-standing award supporting emerging artists. The awards have emerged coincidentally with the overall growth in interest in Indian art in the past decade, and aims to significantly contribute to the success of young artists who transition from educational institutions into the country’s art scene. The Fine Arts award has long been a key focus for the Inlaks Foundation within their prize roster, and last year the award increased its grant to provide enhanced opportunity to young artists after graduate/post graduate degrees in the fine arts. This year as well, it is befitting to host a presentation and reception in Mumbai, where the awards will be announced amidst the trustees, alumni and interested members from the arts field.

The awards ceremony will include a panel discussion with artists Tushar Joag, Ivana Franke and Rasmus Nielsen in conservation with Girish Shahane, followed by the keynote address. Previous alumni of the award include, Hemali Bhuta, Sakshi Gupta, Prajakta Potnis, Rathwa Ambhubai, Chinmoy Pramanik and Ritesh Ajmeri.

Inlaks Fine Arts Award Recipients
Abul Hisham K.H.

Abul was born and brought up in Thrissur, Kerala, and is a product of the city’smulti-cultural, multi-religious society. His father ran a small shop of art materials and approved whole-heartedly when his son opted for the fine arts field. Abdul did his Bachelor’s degree in painting from the Government College of Fine Arts in Thrissur. He then went on to complete his MFA from the S.N. School of Fine Arts, Hyderabad. He remains in that city as practising artist and states: ‘My work is a reflection of my persona and of my reaction to the actions of society. Arun hails from Thrissur, Kerala, from where he did his BFA at the Government College of Fine Arts. He is now in the final year of his MFA at the M.S. University in Baroda. A seminal influence while there was his assisting the eminent artist Gulammohamed Sheikh on his monumental group project titled ‘City’, which is created by layering paper pulp on canvas. Arun now uses this same medium for his own work, starting with small panels and graduating to 6x4 foot works. He says: ‘In the studio the work starts to change my thought processes. It makes me aware of my own inner territory.’

Arun K.S
Arun hails from Thrissur, Kerala, from where he did his BFA at the Government College of Fine Arts. He is now in the final year of his MFA at the M.S. University in Baroda. A seminal influence while there was his assisting the eminent artist Gulammohamed Sheikh on his monumental group project titled ‘City’, which is created by layering paper pulp on canvas. Arun now uses this same medium for his own work, starting with small panels and graduating to 6x4 foot works. He says: ‘In the studio the work starts to change my thought processes. It makes me aware of my own inner territory.’

Vibin George
Vibin studied art history at the M.S. University, Baroda, then switched to sculpture after his first year there. Starting with conventional mediums, he experimented in his own practice which was greatly influenced by his travels in north and east India. Coming from a farm family in Kerala, he consciously started working on farmer-related issues in which he has a deep and abiding interest. Vibin is very much a part of extra-curricular activities like film clubs and other student organizations.

Anjana Kothamachu
Anjana is a visual artist, currently dividing her time between Mumbai and Bangalore. After her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology, she studied and worked in the field of animation. Subsequently she graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts and Crafts, Rachna Sansad. Later she was part of the residency programme, The Last Ship, in Mumbai in 2011. Following this, she was invited as artist in residence by the Stiftung Futur Foundation, Switzerland, which culminated in a solo exhibition. She is currently working toward a solo project at 1Shantiroad, Bangalore.

Sumana Som
Sumana is in her final MFA year in painting at the Department of Fine Arts, Hyderabad Central University. She comes from a small village in West Bengal, yet loves to travel and considers herself a nomad. She is a voracious reader, her favourite subjects being fantasy and science fiction. She says, ‘It is my dream to combine many branches of science and philosophic logic to develop my visual language’.

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