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Drawing

Drawing

  • Place of origin:

    Calcutta, India (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1942 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Jamini, Roy, born 1887 - died 1972 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Drawn in ink on paper

  • Museum number:

    IS.63-1979

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

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Jamini Roy (1887-1972) was one of the most important artists of the modern period in India, drawing on the popular and folk traditions of rural Bengal for his inspiration. Jamini sought to define an authentic modern Indian art; he therefore travelled through Bengali countryside studying folk painting traditions. He developed his own personal style which was characterised by bold lines and flat use of colour.

This sketch is one of a series in the V&A collection which show his experimentation with different subject matter. In this drawing, the artist has depicted a theme related to the everyday life of rural Bengal.This simple line drawing in blue ink shows a figure riding a bullock. Both the bullock and the figure have large protruding eyes which is a characteristic feature of Jamini Roy's work. Interestingly, the artist has drawn flies around the stylized eye of the bullock.

Physical description

Drawing in ink on paper, the artist has depicted a theme related to the everyday life of rural Bengal, a child rising a bullock. This simple line drawing in blue ink shows a figure riding a bullock. Both the bullock and the figure have large protruding eyes which is a characteristic feature of Jamini Roy's work. Interestingly, the artist has drawn flies around the stylised eye of the bullock.

Place of Origin

Calcutta, India (made)

Date

ca. 1942 (made)

Artist/maker

Jamini, Roy, born 1887 - died 1972 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Drawn in ink on paper

Marks and inscriptions

Signature on right hand side.

Dimensions

Height: 11.3 cm, Width: 18.5 cm, Height: 21 cm Conservation paper upon which card is mounted, Width: 28 cm Conservation paper upon which card is mounted, Height: 25.4 cm Conservation paper upon which paper is mounted, Width: 30.5 cm Conservation paper upon which paper is mounted

Object history note

R.F. 79/1370 Purchased from Mr J. C. Irwin in 1979 who acquired the sketch directly from the artist.

Historical context note

Jamini Roy (1887-1972) was one of the most important artists of the modern period in India, drawing on the popular and folk traditions of rural Bengal for his inspiration. Born in Beliator, a village in the Bankura district of Bengal, Jamini was raised in a family of small landowners.

In 1906 he entered the Calcutta School of Art and studied under Abanindranath Tagore, the pioneer and leading exponent of the Bengal School of Art. Abanindranath's tutorage secured Jamini's dexterity both in European and indigenous painting traditions. For a short period Jamini became a portrait painter, a skill for which he was highly regarded in Calcutta. He then experimented with Impressionistic landscapes before rejecting his European training in favour of indigenous art forms.

Initially Jamini adopted the Kalighat style of painting, a popular art form with origins in the rural traditions of Bengal, but found thriving in the back streets of Calcutta. However by the 1920s, Jamini felt that Kalighat paintings had lost their rural ideal having being adapted too much to fit the requirements of their new urban environment. Jamini sought to define an authentic modern Indian art; he therefore travelled through Bengali countryside studying folk painting traditions. He developed his own personal style which was characterised by bold lines and flat use of colour. He used indigenous materials, including lamp black for the outline drawing, 7 basic colours (Indian red, yellow ochre, cadmium green, vermilion, grey, blue and white), which he applied with organic tempera, earth and mineral pigments to homemade canvas spun with fabric. His paintings can be divided into three main themes: the everyday life of rural Bengal, particularly the women of the aboriginal Santhal community, Hindu mythological subjects and Christian imagery.

Jamini was a supporter of the Indian independence movement and his search for an authentic modern India was a response to this. Part of his search involved the restoration of the collaborative indigenous artisanal labour model. Thus, in his workshop he produced a range of stock motifs which his apprentices then copied- all were signed with his name. This increased the production and dissemination of original works which were then affordable to a wider body of people, not just the rich. Jamini gained an international reputation during

Descriptive line

Drawing, child riding a bullock, by Jamini Roy, ink on paper, Kolkata, ca. 1942

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Partha Mitter, The Triumph of Modernism India's artists and the avant-garde 1922-1947, London, 2007
W.G.Archer, India and Modern Art, London, 1959

Materials

Paper; Ink

Techniques

Painted; Drawn

Subjects depicted

Child; Bullock

Categories

Drawings; Paintings; Animals and Wildlife

Collection code

SSEA

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Qr_O82530
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