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A 65-year journey in modern art: India’s National Gallery of Modern Art showcases over 100 creative works

In Part I of our photo essay on the exhibition appropriately titled Itihaas, we feature a range of sculptures and paintings that reflect the growth of modern art in India. On the occasion of World Museum Day, YourStory wishes all its readers a weekend of exploration, reflection and rejuvenation!

Madanmohan Rao
18th May 2019
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PhotoSparks is a weekly feature from YourStory, with photographs that celebrate the spirit of creativity and innovation. In the earlier 340 posts, we featured an art festival, cartoon gallery. world music festivaltelecom expomillets fair, climate change expo, wildlife conference, startup festival, Diwali rangoli, and jazz festival.


India’s National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) is celebrating its 65th anniversary this year. NGMA Bengaluru was opened to the public on 18th February, 2009; the other two national galleries are in Delhi and Mumbai.


The heritage building and garden in Bengaluru are host to a wide range of outdoor installations, indoor paintings, graphic prints, photographs, and other art works. With an auditorium, library, café and museum shop, NGMA is a hub of cultural activities, including conferences, talks, contests, workshops and film screenings.


In this photo essay on NGMA’s 65th anniversary exhibition, we showcase works which represent the rise of modern art in India. In addition to the regular exhibits, there are over 100 sculptures along with paintings and drawings. The show is running for three months, and wraps up at the end of July.


Appropriately titled ‘Itihaas’ (history), the exhibition features sculptors like Devi Prasad Roy Choudhury, Ramkinkar Baij, Dhanraj Bhagat, Sarbari Roy Chowdhury, and Amarnath Sehgal. There are sculptures of freedom fighters as well, made from bronze, steel, wood, and marble.


Interestingly, many of the exhibits are displayed on top of painted boxes, as if to reflect the wandering and universal nature of art, and how artworks can be kept alive over the years to inspire us all. The art works in the exhibition show how India is comfortable with one foot in its rich heritage and the other in global cultural trends. In Part II of this photo essay, we feature more creative works along with insights from NGMA Bengaluru’s Curator Subarna Patro.


“The NGMA is more than an institution. It is a catalyst that celebrates new ideas,” writes NGMA DG Adwaita Gadanayak, in the foreword of the exhibition book. “The exhibition is a fitting way to celebrate the legacy of our modern masters,” adds NGMA Director Pradeep Kumar.


Now, what have you done today to pause in your busy schedule and grasp the broad historical sweep of change around you?


Got a creative photograph to share? Email us at PhotoSparks@YourStory.com!


See also the YourStory pocketbook ‘Proverbs and Quotes for Entrepreneurs: A World of Inspiration for Startups,’ accessible as apps for Apple and Android devices.


Also read: Support traditional and folk arts, don’t just learn about them: Sankalita Das, Secure Giving

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