A Sublime Story
India’s first sky gallery is on a bridge that connects two buildings in the landmark luxury mall, the UB City in Bengaluru. The spark of genius that led to its creation came quite naturally to Uzma Irfan, who was primed from childhood to spot the most advantageous location.
The Director of the Prestige Group, a leading property developer based in Bengaluru, Irfan founded the Sublime Art Gallery in 2009. “I have always been fascinated by artists and the magic they weave on canvas”, she says. And thus, she put her access to the mall to good use, giving reign to artistic expressions and making it a landmark destination for all things related to luxury, art, culture and lifestyle.
UB City has become home to three of the most anticipated events in the country today, and apart from ‘Art Bengaluru’, she holds ‘Trousseau Week’ and ‘Berserk’, a residential art conference for children. These have set new benchmarks in terms of event concept and quality of experience, and Irfan hopes to keep building on them to make them more iconic.
Launched in March 2010, ‘Art Bengaluru’ aims to bring art to the masses and create a society that is aware of, and takes pride in the art and artists of the country. For 10 days each year, anyone can enter the festival free of cost and view over a hundred artworks by international and national artists. The museum-quality display spans a diverse spectrum of mediums and styles.
‘Art Bengaluru’ has put Bengaluru on the global art map, and this annual art soiree has grown to become a much anticipated event. The Tuscan architecture of UB City lends itself to art displays across a vast expanses.
‘Trousseau Week’ was conceptualised in 2010 as a one-stop solution for wedding planning, design and consultancy. It provides wedding couture, planners, designers, photographers, banquets, tourism boards and international and national luxury brands. This annual event transforms Bengaluru into a wedding solutions destination during this period and was awarded the ‘Biggest Fashion Event of the Year’ by Deccan Chronicle in 2011 and ‘Lifestyle Event of the Year’ by WOW Awards for the 2013 edition.
Started in 2013, ‘Berserk’ is an annual 3-day residential art conference for children from chosen city schools. Categorised under four key art verticals – theatre, dance, music and visual art, the conference comprises intensive workshops, guest lectures and demonstrations by professionals.
Beyond these initiatives, Irfan plays a bigger role as Executive Director, Corporate Communications of the Prestige Group. “Prestige today is not just a real estate brand, but also an institution that is changing the way we live. People live in our homes, work in our offices, visit our malls, hotels and spas, and play in our golf course for recreation…in some way, we have managed to touch everyone’s lives. We have the opportunity to create wealth not just for ourselves, but for our buyers and the nation at large. I’m contributing to the company’s growth by creating a unified brand across our product offerings. As we go forward, the stronger we are associated with excellence, the faster and more seamless will be our growth”, she says.
She has helmed the growth of the ‘Falcon News’, the company’s quarterly newsletter into a recognised magazine with a circulation of over 27,000, targeting customers both in India and abroad. She is also the editor of ‘The Luxury Collection’ a premium luxury lifestyle magazine circulated to HNIs in India and abroad. She handles the Falcon Property Management Services, taking it from a relatively insignificant division within the company to one of its most profitable subsidiaries. Tangentially, this enterprising intrapreneur has extended the Sublime brand to tea, media buying and event management as well.
Uzma Irfan was honored with the FICCI-FLO Award for ‘Indomitable Spirit’ in inspiring the modern woman in 2013, as ‘Female Real Estate Professional of The Year’ by Bangalore Real Estate Awards 2014, and ‘Woman Super Achiever in Real Estate’ by ABP News Real Estate Awards 2015. Uzma also received international recognition when she was awarded the ‘Female Real Estate Professional of the Year’ at the 2nd BERG Awards, Singapore in 2015. She was the recipient of the ‘Woman Achiever of the Year’ Award at the Global Real Estate Brand Awards 2016 and more recently, was felicitated with the ‘Woman Entrepreneur of the Year’ award by the Bangalore Management Association (BMA) in 2017.