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Play and win

Copyright: Andrea Brussig

The “Artcard” game was first developed in Sweden to seek new ways of disseminating the works of women artists. Today, Berlin is experiencing its first version of the “Artcard” game with Mini Kapur, who is the owner of the gallery, Under the Mango Tree, in Berlin.

What is the exhibition about?

The exhibition is about women and is called “Play and win the Game.” We have exhibited the original works of women artists who have participated in the making of this card game.

More than an exhibition, it is a project. What do you mean by this?

Gender inequality in the art world is not just a subjective impression. 70 percent of art students are women, but only about 20 percent who make a living with their chosen profession.  In Berlin, 54 artists have joined forces to put together a project of playing cards called the “Artcard” game. Initiated originally in 2005 in Sweden by Kerstin Diedrich and Barbro Werkmaester, the first German version has been realized this year with the participation of 40 German and 14 Swedish artists connected to Berlin. These women artists are constantly seeking different ways of disseminating their works.

Copyright: Susanne Hromada

The game seeks the presence of women’s art in normal life where it can be held in one’s hand, like while gambling, it evokes the idea of risk and gain. Photographs, paintings sketches, sculptures and installations complete the picture.

What made you select these artists? Is it solely the fact that they are women or is there some theme or some style which links them together?

As a commercial gallery I would have had a solo show or a curated show of a group. I think everyone should get an oppportunity. Personally I am not the kind who likes to differentiate between men and women. I think India offered me the best time in my professional life, where i got all the equal opportunities which I also used. I would never choose an exhibition based only on a simple issue of it being of a woman or a man.

The issue of respect for women is an important issue; this exhibition tries to be a part of creating a reality that links them all together, each work is individual. It is just being together in the “Artcard” game, which is what links them together.

Copyright: Hildgard Skowasch

The idea of using the project money to fund more artists in the future is very good. What exactly do you propose to do?

The next country ( 54 women artists) would be invited to provide their works- the originals always stay with the artist as their own property. The realisation of the next cardgame – from designing to its realisation as a finished product is going to cost money. The funds from the present Card Game would enable all the stages of production of the next card game. One pack costs as minimum as 20 Euros plus taxes.

It is also an extremely good gift for individuals, organisations  and offices – who intend gifting their friends or clients for the upcoming christmas. Organisations specifically working for women may also be interested in buying these cards and be a part of this project in this way. I believe that you would not just gift – it would also have a message.

Could you please tell us a little bit about your own gallery?

l am actually a graphic designer, working in my profession since maybe now more than 25 years. My interest in arts and literature – brought me to initiate the gallery in 2011. Initially I wanted to show only indian contemporary art and photography. I realised that people here do like it but it needs to be done slowly. We have shown, Turkish, Korean, Germans who returned after staying abroad, Indians, French Designers.

Our programme consists of paintings, photography, sculptures, installations; music is an important part of this gallery, in the form of concerts. We also like to arrange readings with music. We see this place as a creative space where a large interaction takes place between differrent cultures. We have made this space available to show a documentary film – with a social perspective.

Interview: Mini Kapur via Email

Editor: Manasi Gopalakrishnan

Visit Under the Mango Tree. Click here. You can contact Mini Kapur at


11.10.2013 | 14:25