Food And Travel

Exploring The Unexplored

Du Khabar | Delhi University
Written by Shivangi Kanojia

After so much head scratching and nearly losing my mind, I decided to optimally utilize my Friday (an off, another story for some other day) by exploring the city. I spent the next few days, googling new places and randomly clicking on some ridiculous websites. I even came across a website claiming to give “the couples” an isolated place for the lovely talks. Nevertheless, after so much research I decided to visit the National Academy of Art. Its regional centre in Delhi is located on the premises of a heritage site, locally known as Village Gargi Zharia Maria. The journey to the place is in itself an interesting story. Cutting it short, I almost got lost, thanks to my capability of transforming into a blind while reading maps and incapability to take directions. I had to ask for directions at every turn. But when there is a will, there is always a way. The Academy is situated at the end of a busy narrow lane. One can see the everyday commotion on the streets. But as soon as you reach the academy you will be amazed by the immense amount of creative pieces in front of you.  
The Academy meets the need of the practicing artists. The place is divided into many studios. Due to my time constraint, I could only visit two studios- Painting and Sculpture. After absorbing the abundant beauty in front of me, I moved around a bit in search of an interview with the working artists. I was lucky enough to interact with many artists from different studios. They were eager to share their stories, struggles and the passion of their life. There was no barrier in terms of caste, colour or creed. Many of them came from farthest parts of India, had completed their formal education and were living their dreams.
There was a similarity in my conversation with the artists. They all were in this field for self- satisfaction and required monetary gain to sustain them. Although some of them were struggling to pay their bills and were going through a tight monetary period, still they were more than willing to continue with this profession. They were a part of another struggle as well. I vividly remember an artist from the sculpture studio commenting on the struggle that every artist goes through. It is the struggle one face on seeing a blank canvas. A canvas for them is a medium to express their innermost desires and a blank one reflects their ineffectuality.
My experience with the artists is to be cherished forever. I didn’t want to leave the place but the clock was ticking and the cell phone was ringing. While going back, I, one more time, took a glance at the pieces of fantastic art lying on the floor. They were in huge numbers; some of them conveying stories while others holding them within themselves. I boarded the metro and made way towards home. But their home was in the pieces lying on the floor.  Who is going to make them board the train towards it? Me, you or the artist themselves?
NOTE: If anyone feels motivated enough to visit the place, go ahead. It is worth the time, money and energy. But do remember these handy tips.
•    Take a friend who knows the art of following directions.
•    Never use google maps. Never. Trust local people.
•    Always get down at East Kailash metro station.
•    If you are a loner, good place to explore.
•    WARNING: You have to walk A LOT. So think twice before wearing those wedges. (For girls)

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About the author

Shivangi Kanojia

Shivangi Kanojia is an English Literature student, born and bred in Delhi. She is the sanest mental retard and is a part of college’s dramatics society. She likes burning non- flammable food and has an undying love for crappy television. She juggles her free time between Dexter, a serial killer and ridiculously handsome ghost hunters from Supernatural. Oh, she believes in writing snappy pieces of really, really good writing, too.

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