Artist of the moment…Jamini Roy…

Jamini Roy came from India and was born in a small rural area in West Bengal in the year 1872. He was known for his mix of western and eastern art. Many of his works have an Egyptian style feel to them as he drew images of people with their head turned to the side as  in a  profile view, or at least using the staple of Egyptian art, the eye is always drawn from a profile point. His family was middle class.

A brief clip showing some works by the artist. The first images start around forty seconds into the segment.

For his art education Jamini Roy went to study at the Governmental School of Art in Calcutta. When he was only sixteen years old he began studying and painting the figure in a classical realist manner. He also became an Impressionist and painted many landscapes. He then went back and took some symbols from his own life and culture and inserted them into his paintings.

One subject the artist loved to explore from his own culture, dance.  The Santhal are a large tribe living in India and he loved interpreting their dances as he could mix colors, clothes, and figures.

Much like a CEO, the artist had a vision and some goals to accomplish. One was to make art available to a wider selection of people and to make people aware of what life was like in his part of the world. I found it great that he even switched to local materials to give his work an ever higher authentic and unique feel.

The part from his own life that he put into his paintings is called Kalighat Idiom. Outside of a temple located in Calcutta many paintings were sold that had this theme of Kalighat idiom manner of painting.  Roy began using more line in his drawings and also used materials that were easily found in his home country. Out was canvas, in was his own surfaces out of wood and cloth. Roy gained much popularity during this time for introducing the outsider art world to his quiet region of earth.

Jamini Roy won the third highest award given to civilians in honor of their work for the state.  The award is named the Padma Bhushan and he won the prize in 1934.
Price range info: For the most part Roy worked in gouache. These works are priced from $4,000 to $40,000.

 

The artist passed away in 1972 at the age of  85 years old.

 

-D

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