Exact Match
Title Durga
Accession Number ngma-04847
Museum Name National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi
Gallery Name NGMA-New Delhi
Object Type Painting
Main Material
Medium Brush and ink on paper
Main Artist Nandalal Bose (1882-1966)
Artist's Nationality Indian
Artist's Life Date / Bio Data Nandalal Bose, popularly known as the Master Moshai, was born on December 3rd, 1882 in Kharagpur, Monghyr District, Bihar. A disciple of Abanindranath Tagore, he graduated from Government School of Art, Calcutta in 1910. Nandalal was fascinated by the potential of folk art and indigenous modes of expression and inculcated them in his works although stylising them in a unique representation for depiction and narration of local life. His explorative temperament with artistic materials allowed him to create a vast body of work with printmaking techniques such as lithography, linoleum prints and Sino-Japanese techniques while remaining faithful to his narrative subject: India's environment and its ethos. Nandalal Bose's art conjures newness unbound, yet it is flushed with the memories of yesterday. Inspired by Far Eastern sensibilities that celebrate the traditional, the genius of his art lies in the interplay of sensual silhouettes and his powerful rendering of contemporary themes with the traditions, customs and sensibilities of Indian heritage. It is this intermingling that invigorates his works and captures the minds of his viewers. He began his artistic career in the fervour of the Swadeshi movement, rejecting western colonial norms of art and taking inspiration from the ancient murals of Ajanta and Bagh caves as well as Mughal miniatures. In 1919, Nandalal Bose accepted Rabindranath Tagore's invitation to become the Principal of the newly established art school Kala Bhavan at Visvabharati University in Santiniketan. He travelled in and out of India including places like Burma, China, Japan, Malaysia, Java and Sri Lanka seeking artistic stimulus from observing different cultural traditions. He also painted a series of posters for the Indian National Congress at Haripura in February 1938. The range of Nandalal's artistic expression is seen in his various landscapes with human figures, his varied images of nature and the Santiniketan Murals. His works reflect the changing landscape, portraying people and places at a time when modern India's cultural development was at its threshold. Nandalal Bose died on April 16th, 1966 in Santiniketan, West Bengal. He won several accolades including the Padma Vibhushan by the President of India in 1953. He was awarded with an honorary Doctorate in Letters (D. Litt.) from Banaras Hindu University in 1950 and Calcutta University in 1957. The NGMA has over 6800 of his works in its collection.
Origin Place India
Inscription Signed 'Nanda' in Bengali along the lower margin of the postcard with black ink.
Dimensions 46.5 x 76 cms
Detailed Description Nandalal is known to have fervently sketched on postcard sized papers, recording his surroundings. His small sketches vastly vary in detailing, some drawn quickly with just a few lines, others executed with more elaborate characteristics from an analytical perspective. Nandalal's search for newer forms of expression and his inner urge to constantly innovate is well reflected in the multiple postcards in the collection of the museum which portray the artist's visual experiences of the flora, fauna, people, attires, life in rural villages and the country's myriad landscapes.
Brief Description Nandalal had a strong affinity for sketching, his subjects being the surrounding environs, people in their everyday life or anything that he found fascinating. In the above sketch the artist has rendered a Hindu goddess Durga in her ferocious avatar, riding on her mount. The composition is rendered with linear, firm yet fluid ink strokes articulating the contours and suggesting the demeanour of the subject.