Home is Where the Art is: Artist Seemita Roy talks about her art-filled abode
Artist Seemita Roy literally treats her Kolkata home like a blank canvas, filling it up with her paintings from floor to ceiling
Is it a gallery? Is it a home? A gallery within a home?
A home within a gallery? These questions are bound to befuddle you the minute you step into artist Seemita Roy’s first-floor apartment in Kolkata’s leafy Hindustan Park. A home brimming with not one or two, not a dozen, but as many as 51 paintings that cover every inch of the 1,695 sqft space. All were painted by her at various points in time.
Actually, the art starts even before you enter— two large paintings in the lift lobby hold a promise of what lies beyond. Open the door, and the art explosion that greets you more than lives up to that promise. Step into the foyer and a collection of canvases are grouped together in a massive collage. Kolkata, clearly, is Roy’s muse as the canvas-collage tells you all too well. The life and times of the city, its people, its streets, its reigning deity, Durga, are all brought to life on that wall.
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This is just the beginning. Further in, a beautiful antique dining table lined with sketches of Kolkata monuments is ringed by bright lime green chairs. On the wall behind is a giant, larger-than-life canvas of Kolkata’s staple food—fish. Move further ahead into the living area, and you will see all three walls (the fourth wall has French windows opening into the balcony) covered with all manner of art, from floor to ceiling. There are some discernible influences of the great Venetian masters in Roy’s work here, but again, the biggest influence is still the City of Joy.
Roy, who lives in Gurugram but comes over every other month, created this home mainly for her mother. “It was designed keeping in mind her comfort, so I made sure the décor blended with the lifestyle she is used to,” explains Roy.
The furniture, therefore, had to match the style of her mother’s trusty old four-poster bed as well as other prized period pieces. Something she has achieved with great success, especially by dispensing with a regular sofa and placing four Burmah teak armchairs around a low coffee table. And by painting an old chest of drawers a bright shade of emerald green.
The art story continues in the bedrooms as well, especially Roy’s, which is dominated by another huge wall mural in a pleasing shade of peachy coral. A set of portraits in classic European style above the headboard add to the eclectic vibe.
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While this home is an ode to her Bengali roots, Roy’s sprawling Gurugram abode, which she shares with her husband, Samar, is on a completely different scale—a 4,000 sqft apartment in a modern, state-of-the-art building. While all the art there is hers as well, the décor and furniture are mainly European/Scandinavian and “reflects the lifestyle we adopted during our three decades stay in Dubai,” she says. Well, another story for another time? Watch this space.