If you have an inclination towards art, but the thought of going to an art gallery puts you off due to their intimidating nature and the snob quotient attached to them, then we a have news for you. Art connoisseurs, Shwetambari Soni and Reshma Jani are turning the concept of art galleries on its head by showcasing art at contemporary settings like lounges, spas etc. rather than those tedious art galleries. Gallerie Angel Arts (GAA), a premium boutique art service, founded by Shweta and Reshma doesn’t just sell art. It is a gallery which creates unique experiences around art by showcasing the works of their artists at contemporary settings, bringing the artist and the clients at a common platform to make Art a more personal and enjoyable experience. The Inception Shweta is a Hotel Management graduate, for whom the love for art evolved very late in her life, after marriage and kids. “It began after I was gifted my first painting, I just fell in love with the whole idea of expressing who you are on a canvas,” says Shweta. So seriously in love she had fallen, that she went for a workshop to Christies, London; a course which completely changed her views on Art. Reshma, on the other hand, had been working as a fashion designer for years, and slowly her love for aesthetics developed into love for Art. “I started hosting small art evenings in my home, introducing the concept of collecting art as an investment in a private setting. This worked very well for me till I realised I wanted to expand and grow and make it a career,” says Reshma. It was in 2009 that they met each other through work. An instant connection developed due to shared interests and vision and ‘Gallerie Angel Arts’ came into being. The start, however, was not so easy for the duo, “As a young gallery which believed in displaying art in contemporary settings we were initially not taken seriously,” says Shweta. It took a lot of time and back breaking effort to make people, especially artists, understand their vision. They started with ‘Friday Art Evenings’ at the Reflections lounge at J W Marriot which was followed by ‘Art and Music Unplugged’, a beautiful amalgamation of art and music, hosted by Chivas and marketed by VH1. What makes Galerie Angel Arts unique? In the competitive landscape of art galleries Gallerie Angel Arts stands apart thanks to their concept of presenting artists in a unique and contemporary setting. “Art has always had a snob quotient, most people you talk to will say, they don’t understand art or what it means. We simply create a platform to make it more accessible,” says Reshma, explaining the USP of their gallery. There is a whole new demographic of young entrepreneurs out there, who would like to collect art without feeling intimidated is a serious gallery space. Gallerie Angel Arts provides the perfect setting for this. The Art and Music Unplugged property brings art to these people as an experience which they can relate to. “We see this unconventional model to be very successful and accepted by our serious Art collectors, which have grown over the years,” says Shweta. The fact that some of the most renowned artists like Prafulla Dhanukar, Sunil Padwal, Brinda Miller, Arzaan Khambatta, Ankit Patel, Vinod Sharma, Akash Choyal, Heeral Trivedi, Arananshu Choudhury, Ravi Mandlik, Shamendu Sonavane have worked with them, proves that the concept has been received well by artists and art enthusiasts alike. What the future looks like... They opine that contemporary art is a nascent market in India right now, pertaining to a small segment of society. “However, India being culturally rooted in Art, the market is evolving at a fast clip,” says Reshma. Events like the India Art Fair in Delhi prove the growth and acceptance of contemporary art. Also people in Mumbai are very open to experimenting with new art forms and there is a potential for young artists to grow. As for Gallerie Angel Arts, they plan to serve this growing market by expanding into retail and are looking at a physical space to have their own brand of ‘Art’. “Art shows, however, will continue being the backbone of our business,” says Shweta. Upcoming events Gallerie Angel Arts is coming up with an arts print event in March to showcase their affordable collection of art prints for home, gifting and corporate purposes. Stay tuned for more info on the event. Thanks to people like Shweta and Reshma modern contemporary Indian art is becoming accessible to more people. If only more art galleries were as innovative! Head over to Gallerie Angel Arts to check out their latest offerings and event listings.