Lankan art gets world’s attention at Art DubaiView(s):
It’s not often that a Sri Lankan artist finds his work splashed across the pages of international magazines. Priyantha Udagedera’s paintings found their way into Harper’s Bazaar Arabia Art Arabia and Wallpaper when the publications covered Art Dubai.
The month of March saw Art Dubai’s most diverse and exceptional edition to-date. The tenth edition of the Middle East, South Africa and South Asia’s leading art fair attracted a record 27,516 visitors with a capacity crowd of 5,142 during the Collectors Preview alone.
The Saskia Fernando Gallery was selected as the first Sri Lankan gallery to participate in the fair, amongst an array of international galleries from over 90 different countries. Directors and curators visited the fair from the Centre Pompidou, Museum of Modern Art New York, Solomon R. Guggenheim, Tate and many more leading institutions from the art world.
For the Sri Lankan artists featured at Art Dubai, it was a remarkable exposure. Works by the ten artists on exhibit were sold by Saskia Fernando Gallery on the first night and sales continued throughout the fair. Priyantha Udagedara’s work was selected from the hundreds of works on exhibit to headline articles on the fair by international publications such as Harper’s Bazaar, Art Arabia and leading design magazine, ‘ Wallpaper’.
Dubai’s ‘The National’ newspaper specifically mentioned Saskia Fernando Gallery as a strong presence in the South Asian element of the fair.
In addition to established artists Jagath Weerasinghe, Chandraguptha Thenuwara and Thamotharampillai Shanaathanan, emerging artists Priyantha Udagedara and Prageeth Manohansa’s work were selected based on their strength and prominence in recent years. Sri Lankan-born Rajni Perera, who now resides in Toronto, exhibited her portrait work and Saskia Pintelon, Belgian-born Sri Lankan resident for over 30 years, exhibited her painted photography series. New entrants to the local scene Abdul Halik Azeez, M.Vijitharan and S.Hanusha also participated in the presentation.
The response to the work was overwhelming, said Saskia Fernando, owner of the Saskia Fernando Gallery who was at Art Dubai, adding that with such incredible press the outstanding nature of Sri Lankan contemporary art has now begun to attract the international art world’s attention.