Two trailblazing women and patrons shaping South Asian art — Nadia Samdani MBE, Founder of Samdani Art Foundation, and Tarana Sawhney, Chairperson of the National Taskforce on Art & Culture at the Confederation of Indian Industry — come together to highlight the importance of patronage across borders in order to build a robust future for the global arts landscape. The conversation will be moderated by curator Veeranganakumari Solanki.
Generously supported by JSW and curated by researcher and arts manager, Priya Chauhan, ART ACROSS —— celebrates the power of critical dialogue and the critical need for celebrating the arts. Spanning key issues in art, design and architecture from a variety of perspectives including from institutions, market experts, philanthropists and creatives, the series aims to foster an inclusive platform to explore contemporary culture, with South Asia at its centre. All talks will also be conducted in Indian Sign Language.
Nadia Samdani: Nadia Samdani MBE is the Co-Founder and President of the Samdani Foundation. The foundation supports contemporary artists in Bangladesh and South Asia. Nadia also serves as the Director of the Dhaka Art Summit, which has completed six successful editions under her leadership. She serves as an advisor to many international art institutions around the world.
Tarana Sawhney: Tarana Sawhney is the current Chairperson of the National Taskforce on Art & Culture at the Confederation of Indian Industry. She is a trustee on the board of the Chennai Photo Biennale (CPB) , and a board member of the NGO Khushii and the Foundation of Indian Contemporary Art (FICA). She is also a Member of the Tate International Council and the South Asian Acquisitions Committee of the Tate Modern Museum, London. Tarana recently joined the International Leadership Council of the New Museum, USA. During her 6 year term as Chairperson of the National Taskforce on Art & Culture, CII co-organised the India Pavilion along with the Ministry of Culture, Government of India at the Venice Biennale in 2019. She is also a member for the G20 Culture Working Group as part of B20 with the Ministry of Culture, Government of India in 2022-23. Tarana supports the FICA Public Art Project at India Art Fair and the Peers Share program at KHOJ annually. She has co-authored an India-focused report on Art & Philanthropy with Art Tactic, U.K in 2019 and 2020. She also conceptualised and supported the largest virtual public art project from India “My 2020 Hero” through CII and CPB in 2020. Tarana was part of the organising committee for the Dhaka Art Summit 2023. A lawyer with 3 undergraduate degrees in History, Music and Law and a Postgraduate degree in Law from Upenn, she now devotes full time to the patronage of arts. Tarana lives and works in New Delhi.
Veeranganakumari Solanki: Veeranganakumari Solanki is an independent curator and writer based in India. She is interested in the way interdisciplinary forms and creative practices merge to create dialogues in public and private spaces and the convergence of images across disciplines. Further, her research and practice consider how historical and contemporary thought informs exhibition-making and artistic practices to expand the ideas of medium specificity through narration, memory, time and story-telling. Her curatorial discourse has focused primarily on art practices within South Asia and its diasporic context. Veerangana was the 2019 Brooks International Research Fellow at Tate Modern and a resident at Delfina Foundation. Currently, she is the Programme Director at Space Studio, Baroda, a Director of the SqwLab Foundation and teaches the Curatorial Practice MFA programme at Kathmandu University. She curated ‘Future Landing: The Arcade’ at the Serendipity Arts Festival 2022 and ‘Synaesthetic Notations’ at the Serendipity Arts Festival 2023.