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Volte Art Projects, a contemporary Indian art gallery that relocated to Dubai in 2021, is significantly expanding its scope and programming in the Gulf this year.

The gallery announced this week that it will open Volte Masters, a new space dedicated to showcasing modernist masters, within its sprawling 743-square-meter venue in Alserkal Avenue, Dubai’s leading arts district.

Volte Masters will launch on February 27 with a rare solo exhibition of paintings and drawings by Manjit Bawa (1941–2008), a major Indian modernist known for exploring human-animal relationships through a unique figural style inspired by childhood memories and myth.

The Bawa showcase is indicative of Volte’s aim to introduce seminal Indian modernists to Gulf audiences while making new global connections, according to Tushar Jiwarajka, the gallery’s founder.

“We look forward to showcasing modern Indian artists that may not be well known in this region as well as establishing dialogues between their work and international modernism,” said Mr. Jiwarajka.

The gallery, established in Mumbai in 2009, gained recognition for its dynamic programming focused on contemporary Indian artists and has continued this approach since its 2021 Gulf expansion.

Coinciding with high-profile events like Dubai Art Week, Volte will present major installations by Nalini Malani, a pioneering Indian multimedia artist, at Alserkal venue Concrete. Her works, which address gender violence and nationalism, underscore the gallery’s interest in socially engaged contemporary art.

Volte has also added five new artists to its roster, including Marina Abramović, Ghiora Aharoni, Navjot Altaf, Rashid Rana and Shambhavi. This further diversifies the gallery’s international scope.

The expansion comes as Dubai solidifies its position as an art hub, with 2021 seeing over $500 million in auction sales, third behind New York and China.

Yet modern South Asian art has been relatively underrepresented both at auction and institutionally in the Gulf. Volte Masters could fill this gap, while also cultivating collector interest beyond art circles, Mr. Jiwarajka noted.

“Our rich programming reflects the multiplicity of our backgrounds and interests,” he said. “This will enable meaningful cultural exchange and introduction of artists from South Asia and beyond to those who have not experienced their work.”


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