Kolkata exhibition celebrates Gopal Ghose

Kolkata, May 19 (IANS) The centenary of legendry artist Gopal Ghose, famed for ingenious handling of watercolours is now being celebrated with an exhibition of his works at an art gallery here, the organisers said Sunday.

Around 50 of his creations are on display from May 18 at the Akar Prakar Art Gallery. Bulk of the works are in watercolour, few in pastel and mixed media in the show, christened “Gopal Ghose – A jubilant quest for the chromatic”, they said.

The range and diversity that constituted the 1913-born Ghose’s artistic manoeuvre, and his signature style involving brilliant touches of pure hue and the elan of flourish in the calligraphic lines have been successfully brought out in the show, scheduled to continue till June 27.

“That this is but one aspect of his creative self, is apparent through the range of works in the exhibition. Beginning with a pictorial language that was inspired to a great extent by the Bengal school diction, his personal language transformed during the 1940s,” said art historian and critic Sanjoy Kumar Mallick.

Born in Kolkata, Ghose was under the tutelage of Deviprasad Roy Chowdhury at the Government School of Arts, Madras, (now Chennai), in 1936, and his early pictorial language was greatly inspired by the master.

Fond of the Indian landscape, he took a cycle tour of India to see the whole nation, “trying to find out the range of what you call India”, said Mallick.

In the 1940s, Ghose moved on from his initial fascination with landscaping to a pictorial diction involving urban life as exemplified by his sketches of the infamous Bengal famine and riots.

The paintings completed during his proximity with the collective Calcutta Group oriented towards a lively exploration of the chromatic earned him the sobriquet “ronger Jadukar” (magician of colours).

Besides watercolour, he was also adept in tempera, pen and ink, and brush and pastel.

The tenor of his work became more and more profound and serene as years passed, as he embraced the suggestive veering away from expressionist impulsiveness.

“(But) his final paintings in 1980 returned once more to the flourish that trans-fixed fleeting impulsive impressions into momentous images,” said Mallick.

The works on display is representative of Ghose’s works from the 1930s to the 1970s.

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