Artichol, Jabalpur, Madhya Pradesh – 2015
A patron of the arts for over 30 years, having founded Gallery Sanskriti in Calcutta in 1990, Ambika Beri was drawn to the art, history and heritage of Maihar in the Bundelkhand region in Madhya Pradesh, and decided to set up an oasis for artists to come and explore, and establish new streams of thought and art. Artichol opened its doors in 2015.
In 1997, Bikash Bhattacharjee was the first artist to visit, and be mesmerized by Maihar; opening up the floodgates of artists (like Anjolie Ela Menon, Paresh Maity, and Ravinder Reddy) to come and explore the rural and historical settings. Over the years, painters, ceramicists, sculptors, writers, photographers, film makers, et al, have all tasted and enjoyed the flavours of Maihar.
The infrastructure at Artichol comprises an open-air sculpture park, a performance stage, an art gallery, an artists’ residency and studios for bronze & metal casting, stone & wood carving, and clay modeling. In addition to this is access to the local village, for knowledge and skill exchange. The residency programs take care of transport to Maihar, hospitality, a stipend and studio material for the artists. The residency can be from 2- 6 weeks depending on the medium practiced by the artist. Works created remain in the collection of Art Ichol, and are displayed at the Centre.
The advisory board has had Dr Alka Pande in the past, and now has Madhavi Subrahmanian, Anjani Khanna and Laxma Goud.
Art Ichol had sponsored Anjani Khanna to Fremantle Arts Centre in Australia (2017), Ramesh Chandra and Falguni Bhatt (2018),and Ram Milan Singh, Ravi Kumar and Ramesh Chandra to Taoxichuan Art Centre, China (2019).
A fantastic ceramic residency was held earlier this year, and they have trained a young, local farmer Uday Singh in ceramics, who has been invited to the Craft Triennale 2021 in Perth, Australia.