Seeing art and architecture meet can be inspiring. Be it an art gallery or art showing. But this particular individual goes much further. Entrepreneur Sreejith is making unique things happen in the most unusual spaces and circumstances — ways you don’t expect a businessman to explore. But to tell the story, one needs to flashback 20 years. In his early 20s, towards the fag end of the 1990s, Sreejith Pathangalil, an artist was eking his living. The man who recently started an art gallery in the heritage town of Mattancherry in Kochi, started back in his heyday with a mere capital of Rs 5,000 that his mother Sreebala, a nursery school teacher had invested for his son’s maiden business venture. Fast forward to 2018, and her son is now a millionaire at the helm of Rs 50 crore furniture business based in Kochi and Thrissur.
The home decor studio, exudes a different ambience, some wonder whether it is a gallery or a furniture showroom! Everything on display has artsy leanings. And it opens doors to Sreejith’s artisitc bent of mind.
His brand new showroom that opened four months ago in Thrissur, has dedicated its sprawling first floor to art. And it’s not exhibits alone. “Starting this month, the space would host programmes connecting art and architecture. In the store, we have displayed work of artistes who took part in the Kochi-Muziris Biennale —sculptures by Premji and portraits of Babu KG. We get internationally reputed architects to talk and artistes to showcase their work, beginning with CF John and architect Intanon Chantip. With Thrissur being the cultural capital of Kerala, there is immense possibility to tap into the arts scene. A curators’ team has also been formed for the purpose,” says Sreejith.
Yet, we wonder if he has left his artiste persona behind. “My gallery was born out of passion. Back then, I had conducted an exhibition with artists of national repute. I realised, there are no buyers who really value art. I shifted gears to reach my goal, taking art with me,” Sreejith reasons.
His studio is not a place to take home what is on display. While people can choose favourites, once fixed, designs are customised at a stipulated time. His sights are now set to enter the august Rs 100 crore club, and Sreejith dreams of making an Indian or Kerala brand making it big on the global front....