India Art Fair Enters The Metaverse

The recently concluded India Art Fair returned to the grounds after a gap of two years. It also debuted on the metaverse allowing scores of art lovers from across the world to access it
The metaverse edition of India Art Fair 2022
The metaverse edition of India Art Fair 2022

When the Indian Art Fair returned in its physical form after a gap of two years, it was bound to be a success. The annual event celebrating the best of South Asia's modern and contemporary art, wasn’t only open to visitors at the NSIC grounds in New Delhi but also to people across the world – via metaverse.

The India Art Fair collaborated with XR Central to create a browser-based 3D metaverse experience. And, all that the virtual visitors needed was a stable internet connection. Having AR and VR gear wasn’t a must, but it did make the experience more immersive. On the metaverse, the visitors had to choose from different avatars, customise them and then enter the fair through fair’s website.

Jaya Asokan, Director, India Art Fair, said, “The aim of creating a metaverse was to give audiences a big picture view of the fair and to get a sense of various sections of the programme. It was gamified with users having the ability to create an avatar of themselves as they walk through and explore the fair, as well as see and cross paths with other users on the metaverse in real time. The engagement has been excellent, both amongst audiences who were looking to visit the fair as well as those who were unable to travel to Delhi to be with us.”

Visitors were able to access the entire fair and visit key sites to look at special highlights like the BMW car wrap created by artist Faiza Hasan, ‘Engulf’ – a sculpture made from junk silencer pipes by Narayan Sinha, and the gigantic fair facade by Anshuka Mahapatra and the Aravani Art Project.

The whole idea was to create a bird’s eye view for people so that they could plan their visit on the metaverse. We always do user research before a project and what we realized was that when people visit a fair, they mark the spaces they want to go to. What if you could visit the digital twin of the fair, instead of getting lost when you reach there? You would know where to go,” explains Shrey Mishra, co-founder XRCentral, a start-up which specialises in metaverse creation for various industries.

According to Shrey, thousands of people visited the metaverse edition of the fair. “What we wanted was a fun experience. People could actually see avatars moving from one place to another.”

To project the 3D aspect of the outdoor installations was challenging but the team at XR Central worked towards capturing the spatial details of the works.

Elaborating upon the opportunity that metaverse brings to the segment of art, Shrey said, “A metaverse is an open to all virtual space with a host of possibilities to engage the viewer deeply. It is a universal fit which includes avatars, the ability to customise avatars, technologies like blockchain, NFTs and multiplayers which are missing in 3D galleries.”

The fair was a hit on ground as well, with most participating galleries and artists reporting bumper sales and overwhelming response. Plus, art connoisseurs were delighted by the variety of art on display. Guess, no one was complaining.

(To visit the India Art Fair, click on

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