Rajiv Saini on his quest to get a Picasso to Mumbai’s Lodha Altamount

Lodha Maison showcases luxury in the lap of nature.. There is an almost intangible quality to art—in the way it transforms spaces, how it influences your perception of a particular room, and in the inestimable value it adds to homes. A well-chosen, and well-placed, artwork can be the differentiator that elevates an elegant space into a unique expression of its homeowners.

In all my projects, art has always been intrinsic to designing interiors, so discussing the right kind of art for a specific type of space is inevitably a part of project conversations with clients.

Acquiring art, engaging with it and developing a taste that is entirely your own is a deeply personal experience and one that I have always encouraged all my clients to immerse themselves in. That sense of triumph, and exhilaration, on finding an artwork that you connect with instantly is undeniable. Among the many discussions I’ve been privy to, the one I had with Abhishek Lodha (managing director, Lodha Developers) three years ago is particularly memorable; understandably so, considering it set in motion the journey to acquire a Picasso.

It was a name that emerged quite unexpectedly, in the course of a chat about what would be a fitting artwork to be showcased at the expansive lobby area at the Lodha Altamount. It was a commission to design the public spaces at this property, which is, quite possibly, the most exclusive address in the city—south Mumbai’s tony Altamount Road neighbourhood. Therefore, the task of choosing the most appropriate work for the lobby, which is the first thing people see on stepping over the threshold, had taken on some significance.

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