Emami Art, Kolkata, is one of India’s most significant art galleries and a critical space for cultural production. The gallery focuses on a future-forward, complex, multi-dimensional approach. It is steadfast in advocating for emerging, mid-career and established artists and engaging with contemporary and historical material. The gallery also aims to create dynamic, wide-ranging registers of exhibition-making and viewing.
In addition to hosting exhibitions and participating in national and international events and fairs, Emami Art has diverse parallel programming. Emami Art has launched the EA Locus in Focus to provide a voice to local and regional communities through ongoing short and long-term projects. EA Incubator & Learning integrates both the physical and virtual interfaces. It helps the arts community free access to regular mentorship programs, workshops, residency opportunities and innovative educational activities that facilitate artistic development, help build collaborative networks and provides a supportive environment for emerging talent. As a centre of excellence, Emami Art identifies as a platform rather than just a facility.
Critical discourses, interactions, documentation and exchange are also essential to our mandate. Under the umbrella of EA Discourse, we develop and produce original writing, periodicals and catalogues that focus on artistic, creative and pedagogical materials. As part of our knowledge-making and archiving process, our regular lineup of talks, seminars, panel discussions and conversations with artists, curators and key partners is helping to establish a safe space for critical engagement.
Emami Art has adopted the inclusive, symbiotic framework, where profitability supports sustainable resource regeneration and public service. The gallery is a green building and strictly maintains free access to all policy.
Deeply committed to promoting a regional, national and international agenda through innovative and alternative programming, emphasis on community and socially relevant engagements, institutional partnerships and more via a multi-year vision for the future, Emami Art is a catalyst of change, research, innovation and inclusivity.
R S Agarwal & R S Goenka, Founders & Jt.Chairman – Emami Group
Totally attuned and complementing each other, Mr. R S Agarwal and Mr. R S Goenka share the same thoughts in matters of innovation, ideation, activation, implementation which led them to create and build, brand Emami – a diversified leading business entity Company built to last. Today, Emami Group, under the aegis of the founding fathers enjoys leadership presence in diverse sectors like FMCG, newsprint & board manufacturing, hospitals, edible oil, bio-diesel, realty, writing instrument, retail and contemporary art, generating employment for more than 20,000 people. Apart from their sharp business acumen and leadership skills, both the friends-cum-business partners are great connoisseurs of myriad genres of performing arts, be it music, art, dance or theatre. Mr. Agarwal and Mr. Goenka’s exquisite taste and love for arts led them to conceptualize & establish Emami Art, one of the largest contemporary art galleries in India and Kolkata Centre of Creativity, a one of its kind integrated art centre in India to nurture inter-disciplinary pursuits of art and culture.
An avid reader and writer, Mr. R S Agarwal is a passionate collector of art and owns an impressive and vast collection of many priceless works from all over the world. He has a penchant for giving expression to his thoughts in the contours of his poems. The two editions of Bhavdhara, are his published books on his collection of poems, featuring his ruminations on life and its tenets. Their book titled ‘Business the Emami Way’, a handbook on business ethics & management published in 2016, went on to become a best seller. On the other hand, possessing an eclectic taste for fine arts, Mr R S Goenka also matches up to the creative inspirations with Agarwal and shares many stimulating moments together. He has also fondly written the foreword of Agarwal’s first book of poems ‘Bhavdhara’. A philanthropist by heart, Goenka is associated with a number of schools, charitable trusts and philanthropic organizations.
Among innumerable awards and recognitions for their outstanding contribution to the industry and society as a whole, both the founding fathers have been conferred with the distinction of Degree of D.Litt (Honoris Causa) by KIIT University of Bhubaneswar in 2017.
Richa Agarwal CEO Emami Art, is the driving force behind Emami Art, a prominent private art organisation in the Eastern region of India. She has been involved with giving form to the institutions core philosophy of making art and cultural practices accessible to all. Under Richa’s aegis Emami Art is focused on a future-forward vision while upholding and honouring established cultural heritages. As an institution Emami Art not only hosts temporary exhibitions of modern, contemporary and cutting-edge art, presents works held in its collection, commissions artists to create site-specific pieces but also stages events across the cultural spectrum such as concerts, performances, symposium, publications, collaborative projects, film screenings, incubator programmes and more.
A successful entrepreneur in her own right with a background in business studies, Richa is on the board of other companies and foundations. As the Chairperson of Kolkata Centre for Creativity Richa has spearheaded this non-profit organization to meet and reach the public sphere for over two years now, resulting in a series of successful outreach programmes across all spectrum of creative pursuits. She is the recipient of The Times Power Women award 2018 and recognition by St Xavier’s University, Kolkata for her contribution to art and culture. She also involved with and has initiated many restoration projects.
Deeply invested in fostering a dynamic relationship that relies on collaborative and educational values to create a support system for the arts and crafts of the region and beyond Richa has helped the institution fluidly traverse the regional, national and international platforms while celebrating the spirit of creative curiosity.
Director & Head Curator, Emami Art
Ushmita Sahu, Director and head curator of Emami Art, Kolkata has a background in fine arts from Kala Bhavana, Visva Bharati University, Santiniketan. Before joining the institution Ushmita has worked as an artist, independent curator, art writer and scholar for several years and has numerous national and international projects to her credit.
In her capacity as a scholar, she has been researching modernist artist-designer Riten Mozumdar for several years and is the leading authority on Mozumdar’s practice. She has curated IMPRINT: Riten Mozumdar, a compact survey retrospective on Riten Mozumdar at Chatterjee and Lal in 2020. A recipient of the IFA (India Foundation for the Arts) research grant to continue her research on Riten Mozumdar, she has previously authored several pieces on Mozumdar which includes a monograph in Bengali.
Ushmita believes in harnessing a multidimensional approach to engage with artistic and cultural practices and production. By introducing long and short term programmes and projects that explore mentorship, critical discourse, artistic andcreative exchangesas well as pedagogical approaches to knowledge making and sharingUshmita aims to create a space of ferment, inclusivity and discourse that will also focus on extending the dialogue within the region. Ushmita also lectures at various art & design institutes and mentors young artists in her spare time.