Recently My Himachal founding member and advisor, Payson R. Stevens exhibited his work at Roerich gallery in Kullu valley


Stevens with Russian Ambassador to India, Mr. V.I.Trubnikov


Details from the museum website:

9th October

Today, a two-days festival started at the International Roerich Memorial Trust, Naggar, at the occasion of Nicholas Roerich’s Birthday. H.E.Ambassador of the Russian Federation in India, Mr V.I.Trubnikov was the Chief Guest of the function.

The day began with sacred sounds of chants during Shanti Puja performed by the Principal and students of Helena Roerich Art College, SDM Kullu and other guests.


Payson explaining his work

After greeting of the Chief Guest and other respected participants of the function, hoisting of the national flags of India , Russia and Banner of Peace followed. Next was the inauguration of the exhibition by American artist and scientist, Mr Payson Stevens, titled ‘Flux and Flow’. H.E.Ambassador of the Russian Federation in India , Mr V.I.Trubnikov inaugurated the show.

Being not only artist, but an ardent environmentalist as well, Mr Payson Stevens narrated about his work in Great Himalayan National Park, and about some ideas concerning the protection of the Kullu valley environment. At the exhibition he presented his recent works, paintings of mountain streams and energy of water.


View of two walls in Gallery

Following tea party was enriched by life music performed by the members of the Russian creative group ‘Aleteya’ (Tumen , Russia), and Mr Valeryi Lipenkov, artist, musician, and art teacher from Novosibirsk.

Himachali folk song sang by Art College children started the cultural program at the stage of the Trust theatre. Traditional dipa was lighted, and the Ambassador of Russia pronounced his welcoming words, followed by the speech of the Ambassador of Belorus. SDM, Kullu, Mr. I.S.Bhardwaj said a few words on behalf of the Kullu administration and H.P.government.

Then, a new book has been released by the Ambassador of Russia ‘Heart of Asia’ written by Nicholas Roerich. This book has been sponsored by the Russian Embassy. It is first time printed in India . Painting competition has been announced, and children both from Art College and from Naggar sat near to create their paintings.

Mr F.Rozovsky, Director of Russian Centre of Science and Culture, New Delhi , read the letter of greetings for the festival written by Mr A.M.Kadakin, former Ambassador of Russia to India , and life Trustee of the IRMT, who is currently the Ambassador of Russia in Sweden.

Then the concert started. International level artist, Meeta Pandit performed several heart-touching items from classical music, accompanied by Pt.Sudhir Pande, who later presented his tabla solo performance. Meeta Pandit’s clear, strong and hearty voice didn’t leave anybody indifferent.

Another book, ‘Jahanvi’, has been released, poetry by DSP Palampur, Sh.Kushal Sharma, who read a few poems dedicated to Nicholas Roerich from his book. Few musical items were further presented by the students of Helena Roerich Art College.

This festival has a rich crop of new books, the third book released was Svetoslav Roerich’s ‘Diary notes on Life and Art’.

Next program was by Shikha Khere, well known Kathak dancer, she has shown the perfection of movements and rhythm her performance was also much admired by the public. Girls, students of the Art College dance department observed each and every one of her movements, permeated by grace and harmony.

On this high note today’s program was finished. Tomorrow will be the next day of performances by classical music artists, Russian creative group, a French musician and students of Helena Roerich Art College. The new exhibition of digital paintings by Neha Sharma will be inaugurated tomorrow, as well as the exhibition on Helena Roerich Art College.

Announcement and rewarding ceremony of the winners of the children painting competition will be the last item in tomorrow’s program.

Join the Conversation


  1. says: Rhianne Lhesli Dove

    greetings, I am looking for Payson Stevens. I met him many years ago at an Earth Day festival in the San Diego area, I was a performer and speaker there. I have some information to share with Payson that might be important.
    please contact him and have him write or call me.
    thank you so very much!

    my phone number is 541-7882553

  2. says: AK

    Times Of India article:


    By Vandana Shukla TIMES NEWS NETWORK

    Chandigarh: It’s not every day that an American artist offers an artistic tribute to a Russian painter. It’s a different matter though that the spirituality of this Russian painter had turned him almost into an Indian sage. For Indians, particularly for the Himachalis, Nicholas Roerich does not sound like a foreign name.American artist Payson R. Stevens, who has been an admirer of Roerich for many years, having grown up in New York City where a gallery is devoted to his work, had exhibited his recent works at Roerich Museum in Naggar, HP. Stevens says Roerich contributed a lot to the inspiration of his work, especially his multidimensional pursuits influenced him. Stevens has dedicated ‘Flux and Flow/Pravah’, as the exhibition’s title goes, to the memory of Roerich’s remarkable life and to all those working to protect and preserve the unique beauty of the Kullu valley. Stevens’ works are exhibited at Roerich Museum’s Modern Art Exhibition Hall at Naggar, and will remain on display till October 26. The exhibition opened on October 9, the birthday of Roerich.

    Stevens, an oceanographer by profession, had been deeply involved in the environmental and earth sciences. His interests as an artist grew in the 1960s when he became a member of New York City’s Bread and Puppet Theatre and later studied at the Arts Students League and the School of Visual Arts.

    “My move to California in 1968 offered a new approach to nature for the first time. My observations of natural forms transformed my life, both as a scientist and artist. I have traveled extensively since from Antarctica to the South Pacific Islands; Baja, Mexico to the Bering Glacier, Alaska; the American Southwest to the Himalayan ranges of Nepal and India and nature has never stopped surprising me,” says Stevens. While the artist in him influenced his scientific pursuits, his art carried reflection of the scientist’s observations in nature. However, a conflict lurked at the back of his mind as to what was his true calling?

    Soon, the answer came as a blessing in the form a spiritual guru. “In 1989, while trekking in Solu-Khumbu, the Everest region in Nepal, I had the good fortune to have an audience with Rimpoche Tulshig (‘tulshig’ means destroyer of illusions), a revered Tibetan high lama of the Buddhist Nyingmapa sect. The dilemma of my life had been doing science versus doing art. The Rimpoche kindly provided me with an answer: “There are enough scientists in the world, it needs more artists to paint!” he said, informs Stevens. However, it took him a while before he fully committed himself to his advice. Now, for Stevens, painting is his daily work.

    Over the past 30 years Stevens has painted abstract land and seascapes, preoccupied by their energy and power. “These images represent my attempt to honour our home planet and engender a sense of beauty and contemplative respect in the viewer.”

    Steven’s exhibition – ‘Pravah’ was inaugurated by the Russian ambassador to India VI Trubnikov and the executive director of the Roerich International Roerich Memorial Trust, Dr Alena Adamkova, on October 9. The works exhibited in Pravah capture the energy and beauty of the nullahs of the Kullu valley and have been rendered on khadi paper that Stevens feels has its own special qualities. The mixed-media drawings combine oil crayons, pastels, pencil and natural pigments from local plants.

    They not only reflect the deeper, mysterious movements and levels in nature, but also the larger spiritual dimension that Stevens feels is embracing us all.

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