Things Of Great Aesthetic Quality


Kaushik Roy, President Brand Strategy and Marketing Communication Reliance Industries Limited talks to Richa Dubey on his love for films and collecting artifacts.

Things that I really love to collect: One is artifacts, anything that is artistic, made of wood, metal or silver. I sometimes buy many things and assemble them together.

I have been collecting paintings for several years, since I used to paint. Many of these paintings are self made and few by other painters. I exhibited my paintings last year that got a good response and all of them were sold. Now there are others who collect my paintings. These paintings are very expensive now.

I have paintings by Gopal Ghosh, who is no more. He was a famous Bengal artist who specialized in landscapes. His work did not fetch him much when he was alive. But now, after his death, these paintings have become much sought after. These have been collected by my father over the years and they have become very expensive. They are invaluable for me. Estimated price of each of this would be Rs 5 lakhs (Rs 500,000).

Since the time I started living on my own I have been collecting artifacts. Initially, my collection was small and not very long lasting maybe because the things I collected were cheap and not durable. When I had more money, I started investing in wood carvings, metals and brass. Now I have slowed down in terms of collecting as there is no space left.

I simply love things that are made by hand as there is a lot of imagination and talent involved in making these things. In most cases, the people who make them are not recognized. So to be able to respect their work, I collect them. They look very beautiful and different.

Most of what I have I collected are from an auction house in Calcutta where you can pick up a beautiful piece of artifact without having to pay a lot. A lot of these are from old auction houses in Calcutta, Mumbai and Bangalore. I also designed a few of them on my own, like the chairs.

Maintenanceis not easy. Metal has to be cleaned from time to time. Wood furniture tends to become weaker over time so they need to be used carefully. Wood has to be treated like a sturdy young man when new and should be looked after when it gets old. A good amount of polish is the best way to maintain wood. Chances of losing wood to white ants are larger than losing it by continuous use.

Most of my artifacts are from India. But I also have been collecting from Thailand, South Africa and a few other places. I have not bought anything from the USA because over there anything that is hand made is of premium price. I don't possess anything European or American I bought rhinoceroses made of wood from South Africa. It is very unique and difficult to make.

In places like Jakarta and Indonesia, they have everything made of wood because of of availability in in abundance. There artisans are also used to working on wood, be it combs made of wood or spoons made of brass.

Silver is a precious item so I don't have many things made of silver. Stone carvings are very rare and I don't have them as they are heavy to carry.

My wife Nina is also fond of collecting artifacts.

Another area of collection is my real passion, films. I invest in buying lots of DVDs. I collect movies which I can watch and enjoy over and over again. Apart from my executive work profile, my biggest love is filmmaking. I am a self trained film maker, have learnt all the aspects of filmmaking on my own.

I have made my first film Apna Aasman, which will release by the end of June. It has Irfan Khan, Shobhna, Anupam Kher and Rajat Kapoor as lead actors.

Therefore, for me filmmaking and collection of DVDs is not just watching but more of a reference. Depending on the response my film gets, I will decide whether to take my filmmaking further and more seriously.

One basic difference between painting and filmmaking is that in the former you can play with the canvas available whereas with latter you cannot. Painting gives a good understanding of framing and composition but the film canvas depends on many external things. Film making is also about performances.

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