TAKE Calendar: The South Asian Edit 2024

Shilpa Gupta, The Horizon Inside of Us, 2023, Animated light installation; Courtesy of the artist, Image credits of Lance Gerber



Where: Abu Dhabi, UAE

When: Ongoing till January 30

What: The inaugural edition of Manar Abu Dhabi is currently held under the theme of ‘Grounding Light’ as 35 immersive installations light Abu Dhabi archipelagos. Co-curated by Reem Fadda and Alia Zaal Lootah, the multi-sensorial experience adapts to multi-diverse usage of light as means of self-enlightenment paving its way through the coastline, mangroves, land, and sky. Look out for two leading South Asian voices amidst a plethora of immersive experiences: Shilpa Gupta and Shezad Dawood. Another major announcement that follows this debut festival is the launch of Public Art Abu Dhabi Biennial in November 2024.


Installation view of previous edition of Colomboscope; Courtesy of Colombosope


Where: Colombo, Sri Lanka

When: January 19 to 28

What: Under the artistic direction of Natasha Ginwala, curated by Hit Man Gurung, Sheelasha Rajbhandari, and Sarker Protick, the 8th edition of Colomboscope—titled ‘Way of the Forest’—compels regional discourses around the notion of forest from an urban and rural context. The experience will unpack different emotions: rebel seeking solace, the fine balance between scarcity and abundance, from heightened vulnerabilities to nestled protection. From the forest, we may learn to listen deeply, in order to hear the morning chorus on Sri Lankan grounds.



Where: New Delhi, India

When: January 19 to 31

What: ‘Common Grounds’ will feature leading clay-based practitioners in India as well as across the globe. For the upcoming edition, artists will metaphorically and literally explore the notion of ground, separated by politics, history, and privilege, yet bound by a ‘common’ humanity and co-dependent future. Curated by Anjani Khanna and Sharbani Das Gupta, this melting pot of culture will mould dialogues between past and present, materials and methodologies, and technology and traditions. 


Andrea Anastasio, Installation view, 2023; Image courtesy of The Sculpture Park, Photo courtesy of Anubhav Syal


Where: Jaipur, India

When: January 28 to December 1

What: Traditional meets contemporary as the 19th century Madhavendra Palace will convert into a dramatic backdrop for a sculptural gallery for artists across the globe. Curated by Peter Nagy, the 4th edition is set to unveil a fresh curation of sculptural renditions that will perch in and relive the many historic stories in the majestic rooms and grand courtyards of the Palace. The centrepiece of this exhibition will be a site-specific installation by Alicja Kwade that will occupy the courtyard. Additionally on display will be artworks by Avantika Bawa, Sudipta Das, Nandan Ghiya, Suhasini Kejriwal, Megha Joshi, and Martha-Marie Le Bars, to name a few. 


India Art Fair, 2023; Image courtesy of India Art Fair


Where: New Delhi, India

When: February 1 to 4

What: IAF is the country’s most prominent annual art event for the South Asian cultural calendar. Celebrating its landmark 15th edition, IAF is set to be the biggest edition yet, that will be housed under the iconic tent designed by Thukral & Tagra. Apart from the futuristic BMW Art car commission, look out for the inaugural Design Section that will feature limited edition and handmade collectible works by leading designers and studios of the country such as Rooshad Shroff, Ashiesh Shah, Vikram Goyal, Studio Renn, and Chanakya School of Craft, among many others. 


Where: Dubai, UAE

When: March 1 – 3

What: The 17th edition of Art Dubai seeks to expand the definition of the ‘Global South’ beyond traditional geographic and economic boundaries. Curated by Alfredo Cramerotti and Auronda Scalera, the 3rd edition of Art Dubai Digital will be presented under the theme of ‘Expansion / Diffusion’. There will be a diverse range of media from AI and AR to Robotic Art and NFT. Another section titled ‘Bawwaba’ (meaning gateway in Arabic), curated by Emilano Valdés, will present 10 solo presentations, wherein art has catalyses in transformation and in championing change in the society. This includes strong Indian contemporary voices such as Laxmipriya Panigrahi, Manjot Kaur, Arshi Irshad Ahmadza, and Debasish Paul.



Where: Venice, Italy

When: April 20  to November 24

What: Curated by Adriano Pedrosa, ‘Stranieri Ovunque – Foreigners Everywhere’ will present 30 collateral projects across the world. Mumbai-based Chanakya Foundation will debut under the exhibition title ‘Cosmic Garden’. This is an artistic collaboration between Madhavi and Manu Parekh and Indian craftsmen. The project casts a spotlight on the contemporary reinterpretation of traditional techniques of hand embroidery, transcending conventional boundaries to carve out a fresh artistic vernacular rooted in collective cultural histories. Curated by Paola Ugolini and Maria Alicata, the exhibition is set to be unveiled at the Salone Verde – Art & Social Club.

Installation view of Vadehra Art Gallery at Art Mumbai 2023; Image courtesy of Vadehra Art Gallery



Where: Lahore, Pakistan

When: October 5

What: With ‘Ecology and Sustainable Futures’ as the theme, curator John Tain will convene artists to lend voices to pressing topics, relevant to Pakistan vis à vis the global current affairs, such as degraded environment, urban pollution, social inequality, and many more. With large-scale public installation at various heritage sites across the city, the 3rd edition of LB aims to foster a deeper connection and understanding of Lahore by diverse communities. The festival will be accompanied by a multi-day Climate Congress.



Where: Mumbai, India

When: mid-November

What: Art Mumbai will continue to pay distinctive homage to the financial capital of India, with a robust curation of modern and contemporary art. The energetic four day schedule will be oversubscribed with extensive speaker series, parallel exhibitions, walkthroughs, and screenings. At the convergence of art, design and cinema, the inaugural edition had Mr. Karan Johar as its cultural ambassador. We can’t wait to see who will be brand ambassador for the 2nd edition! 

Performance art, Lives of Clay at Serendipity Arts Festival 2023; Image courtesy of Serendipity Arts Festival


Where: Goa, India

When: December 15 to 23

What: With the 7th edition of SAF, once again Panjim, ‘the city that never gets flooded’, will be converted into a stage for fine arts, dance, music, culinary arts, and indigenous crafts. Curated by domain experts, the two-week long cultural extravaganza emphasises inclusivity, sustainability, and diversity. A homage to Goa’s cultural odyssey, SAF platforms multifarious facets where diverse artistic expressions converge.


Where: Kochi, India

When: December – April 2025

What: KMB seeks to invoke the historic cosmopolitan legacy of the modern metropolis of Kochi, and its mythical predecessor, the ancient port of Muziris. Alongside the exhibition, the Biennale offers a rich programme of talks, seminars, screenings, music performances, workshops, and educational activities for school children and visitors of all ages. The onset of the 6th edition of the biennale will also mark an end to the elaborate artsy calendar for 2024.

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About Author

Urvi Kothari is a writer and curator based in Mumbai, India. She is the founder of Inside the White Cube, a digital collection of art reviews, shows, and general commentary pertaining to the art world. She recently completed a diploma in Indian Aesthetics from Jnanapravaha, Mumbai and has contributed to multiple publications such as STIR World, Vogue, Design Pataki, Hello!, YourStory, to name a few. Her interests and specialisation lies in modern and contemporary South Asian arts. She is currently researching on emerging trends and practices in this progressing Indian art scene.

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