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Affordable art

SHANTI NANISETTI

Santi Arts, known for selling paintings at reasonable prices, is currently holding an exhibition-cum-sale of the `Ramayana' series of paintings till April 20.


A screen-printed mythological painting. Photo: K. Ramesh Babu

DECORATING THEIR home with paintings is the current fad catching up fast with the Hyderabadis. Considered to be a privilege of the rich and the elite earlier, paintings have slowly begun attracting the middle classes too. The urge to impress upon people who walk into their two-bedroom apartment drives a middle-class family to invest some money in paintings. Stepping in to take care of this latest craze, Santi Arts Hi-tech Medias Limited aims to provide excellent art pieces at affordable rates to today's middle-class families.

The screen-printed paintings which are available at Santi Arts (711, Chenoy Trade Centre, Parklane) come in different mediums and categories, covering about 150 subjects. As part of their Ugadi-Ramanavami celebrations, an exhibition-cum-sale of paintings related to the Ramayana and Lord Rama is currently going on at their premises.

The Ramayana series have Hanuman, Ravana, Kumbhkarna, Angadha - the prince of Monkeys, on eco-friendly paper and silk, Jai Shri Ram, Sri Sita Ram and Sanjeevi Hanuman on glass with frame on display, apart from `Sampoorna Ramayanam' depicting 45 pictures printed on canvas, `Ramapattabhishekam' - a reproduction of Tanjore-style masterpiece on eco-friendly paper.

"We are offering paintings in `bundle offer' to enable art lovers buy many art prints at one go and save up to Rs. 900 on the M.R.P.," says Siddharth Jain, director (marketing), Santi Arts. "Actually, we are into advertising business and hoardings. We also make banners for different occasions and posters for business houses. My brother, who is an artist, started this company about 42 years ago. Painting is a hobby which culminated into this around 15 years ago," he says.

"We used to print poster-sized greeting cards. People would ask for more cards and that's when I got this idea of getting into the art division by promoting paintings as gift items more than decorative pieces. We cater to people who want to buy about ten to 15 paintings within a budget of Rs. 3,000 to Rs. 5,000," he says.

Apart from the Ramayana series, there are paintings in miniatures (Mughal art), folk art, Chinese paintings, charcoal, Kalamkari series, scenic beauty, architectural splendour and five elements of nature, among others. The subjects range from religious, epic and mythological to ancient and modern art.

"Hyderabadis are slowly becoming aware of art and home décor, thanks to the interior decoration magazines flooding the markets nowadays. Perhaps, five years from now, we'll be selling ten times the number of paintings we are trading now," says Jain.

The screen-printed paintings have original, hand painted effect. Made on eco-friendly paper, silk cloth, canvas and glass, they cost about Rs. 110 to Rs. 895. For details and to place orders, contact Siddharth Jain on 7818355/ 7818512 or e-mail to santiart@hd2.dot.net.in.

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