Ministry of Tourism19-January, 2009 18:8 IST
Inauguration of the New Wing of National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi
The new wing of the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA), New Delhi (Ministry of Culture) was inaugurated here today by the UPA Chairperson Smt. Sonia Gandhi. The Tourism and Culture Minister Smt. Ambika Soni presided over the inaugural function and Minister of State in her Ministry Smt. Kanti Singh was the guest of honour. On the occasion specially curated two exhibitions - “in the seeds of time” – from the collection of NGMA and “Rhythms of India: The Art of Nandalal Bose” were also opened.

The expansion of NGMA includes the building of three new blocks together with two levels of basements, adding almost six times the space to the existing Jaipur House. This brings about a quantum leap in the positioning, status and infrastructural environment of the National Gallery of Modern Art, making it at par with best museums of modern art worldwide.

While the exteriors of the new wing respect and complement the art-deco style heritage building Jaipur House, using similar pink and red sand stone for its façade, the interiors introduce a modern and contemporary look. A new exciting design space unfolds, lit by both natural and artificial light. The asymmetrically placed levels break the rigid monotony of an orthogonal space and allow the visitor a view of the dazzling display of art spread through the whole space. Areas open from one to another, while the walls give way to glimpses of the outdoors. The use of cutting edge technology for 'Intelligent' artificial lighting, sensitive internal environmental control and electronic security system enhances the efficiency of the Gallery floors. The predominantly sand blasted granite flooring, laid to a rational pattern, provides for a variety of display options for the curator.

The three new blocks include permanent gallery spaces, temporary exhibition spaces, a new auditorium, a special preview theatre, conservation laboratory, library and academic section as well as a cafeteria and museum shop. The new spaces incorporate all aspects of NGMA's vision to develop a modern, state-of-the-art museum building in terms of flexible display systems, varied ceiling heights, lighting and support facilities and much more.

The new wing makes the NGMA a unique institution; perhaps no other museum in the world has such a vast space at its disposal, in the heart of a metropolitan city. Built on 7.84 acres, the indoor display area alone will be approximately 12000 Sq. mts, while there is more than ample space in the courts and sculpture gardens for outdoor display and site installations.

All the spaces easily accessed by walk-ways, ramps, lifts and staircases together with special facilities and comfortable seating within the Galleries and on the outside, the new wing of the NGMA welcomes senior citizens and the differently abled equally.

The extension reaffirms NGMA's position as a premier institution of modern art in the country. It will continue to track the trends in modern and contemporary Indian art, acquire, preserve and document the best of Indian art practices. It will use state of the art storage, conservation and movement facilities, providing quality care to art heritage. In parallel, emphasis would be on research and documentation, an enhanced reference library with web based linkages to premier institutions in India and abroad, and a wide range of programmes.

NGMA has had a long and credible history. Its inception was in the year 1954 and it has celebrated 50 years of its existence in the year 2005.

(Release ID :46821)