Jamini Roy show under way

An exhibition of paintings by Jamini Roy is currently on view at the Nazrul Tirtha Art Gallery. Open to all from 2pm to 8pm till the end of the month, the retrospective, organised by Hidco, brings together 50 paintings of the master on loan from the collection of Rajya Charukala Parshad, which holds the best collection of Jamini Roy in the country.

  • Published 25.08.17
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Paintings by Jamini Roy on display at Nazrul Tirtha. Pictures by Sudeshna Banerjee
The exhibition being inaugurated by Jogen Chowdhury. Debashis Sen and Bharati Roy are also present 

An exhibition of paintings by Jamini Roy is currently on view at the Nazrul Tirtha Art Gallery. Open to all from 2pm to 8pm till the end of the month, the retrospective, organised by Hidco, brings together 50 paintings of the master on loan from the collection of Rajya Charukala Parshad, which holds the best collection of Jamini Roy in the country.

The inauguration was done by Parshad chairman Jogen Chowdhury, along with academician Bharati Ray and Hidco chairman Debashis Sen.

“Jamini Roy had given a new direction to the art of colonial India. His work bears the signature of a refined and trained mind. As a student of the Government College of Art, he started by copying the Impressionists and Expressionist masters. But gradually he moved away, deriving his own idiom of expression drawing on Bengal’s folk art, notably patachitra, and linking it to modern art. His thick brush strokes are intelligent and restrained, unlike what is seen in works of folk artistes. He used colours of folk art and added new shades to the palette. If we talk of the first modern artistes from Bengal, after Abanindranath, Rabindranath and Gaganendranath Tagore came Ramkinkar Baij, Benode Behari Mukherjee and Nandalal Bose. While their activities were centred at Kala Bhavan in Santiniketan, Jamini Roy was working away simultaneously in Calcutta. Many American soldiers stationed in Calcutta in the 1940s bought his work and thus his art spread across the world. We are fortunate that about 700 are with us at Charukala Parshad,” Chowdhury told The Telegraph Salt Lake.

Bharati Roy pointed out the necessity of showing the works of masters to today’s viewers. “Courses on art appreciation are not available here. So the best we can do is hold such exhibitions. Just as the ear gets trained by regularly listening to classical music, the same goes for the eye.”

She also marvelled at the vast difference in style between the initial paintings which betrayed strong European influence and his later work.

A neatly designed catalogue was also released on the occasion, which reproduced essays on Jamini Roy by John Irwin, Bishnu Dey and Santa Devi.

Sudeshna Banerjee

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