Artist Profile

Nandalal Bose

NANDALAL BOSE (b Kharagpur, 3 Dec 1882; d Shantiniketan, 16 April 1966). Indian painter and teacher. The foremost student of Abanindranath Tagore and a close associate of Rabindranath Tagore (see TAGORE, (1) and (3)), he was a resourceful artist and teacher. His early paintings (e.g. Sati , watercolour, c . 1907; destr.; copy in Delhi, N.G. Mod. A.), revivalist in style and mythological and literary in content, were influenced by the cultural nationalism of Ernest Binfield Havell and of Sister Nivedita and by the early work of Abanindranath Tagore. These paintings brought him to public notice while he was still a student. His sensibility was modified by his study of the wall paintings of Ajanta and of East Asian art, which he was encouraged in first by the Japanese artist Arai Kempo (1878–1945) in 1916 and later by a visit in 1924 to China and Japan. These interests were supplemented by the ideas of Rabindranath Tagore, Ananda Kentish Coomaraswamy, Okakura Kakuzo and Mahatma Gandhi. In 1920 he went to Shantiniketan in Bengal to set up an art school as part of Rabindranath Tagore’s comprehensive educational programme. Under his leadership this became the most vital centre of Modern Indian Art in the 1930s and 1940s.His life time achievement to create Wash Painting (Japanese Art). His Shivas are in Wash Mode.

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