Wednesday, October 28, 2009

National Gallery of Modern Art New Delhi | नेशनल गैलरी ऑफ़ माडर्न आर्ट न्यू डेल्ही

View of Garet House from by James Baillie Fraser.

The National Gallery of Modern Art in collaboration with the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, presents "Indian Life and Landscape by Western Artists", an exhibition of more than ninety paintings and drawings from the V&A 1790 – 1927, at National Gallery of Modern Art, Jaipur House, New Delhi from October 27, 2009 to December 6, 2009.

The exhibition is a collection from London’s Victoria and Albert Museum which shows rare and interesting watercolors, sketches, aquatints, lithographs and engravings by European artists who visited India between the 18th- and 20th-centuries.

Says Prof Rajeev Lochan, Director, NGMA: “The first visual representations of India by western artists were of imaginary landscapes and settings. They were based on the written accounts of travelers to India from across Europe. It was only after professional European artists began to travel to India that they painted, for the first time, scenes based on direct observation. Their passionate interest in this new and exciting land led to the creation of a comprehensive pictorial record of India, in a visual style familiar to western audiences.”

India’s spectacular architecture, the immense natural beauty of her landscapes, and the great diversity of her people have inspired many artists world over. The exhibition is divided into four sections showcasing the works of various schools of art. The exhibit begins with a ‘Picturesque’ tour of India through dramatic pictures of splendid forts, temples, and palaces. The second section showcases works by amateur artists who were captivated by the landscape and architecture of India. Many of these amateurs were East India Company employees, who transferred to canvas their personal experiences. The third section is dedicated to the Romanticism of Indian art that depicts striking, decorative paintings entirely from the imagination. For instance, on view is a panoramic view of the Taj Mahal, paintings of busy street scenes, majestic princes, and doe-eyed nautch girls. The fourth section, based on realism, documents the social life and people engaged in various professions during that time.

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