Nandalal Bose

Born in Jorasanko Thakurbari, Kolkata, Abanindranath Tagore, fondly remembered as an essential figure for restoring the dwindling inner-belief-system in the landscape of Indian art, earned repute in the formative years of his career. Encouraged by Jyotirindranath and Jnanadanandini Devi, he pursued art with an immense passion. He was appointed Rani Bageswari Professor of Art at the University of Kolkata.

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1882 Born at Kharagpur, Bihar
1905 Joined Government School of Art in Calcutta, and became student of Vice Principal Abanindranath Tagore
1907 Received gold medal for Sati after its exhibition at the Indian Society of Oriental Art and the Industrial Exposition in Calcutta. Study trips to historical monuments of North and South India
1909 Travelled to Ajanta on three-month trip to copy murals
1910-11 Produced paintings for books by A. K. Coomaraswamy and Sister Nivedita, Myths of the Hindus and Buddhists. Catalogued the traditional art collection of Abanindranath Tagore with A. K. Coomaraswamy
1912-14 Spent three years with Abanindranath Tagore in Calcutta and became associated with Indian Society of Oriental Art. Taught at Nivedita Girl’s School
1915-17 Travels in India with Arai Kampo of the Japanese Academy of Art
1919 Accepted Rabindranath Tagore’s invitation to direct newly established art school Kala Bhavana at Visva Bharati University at Santiniketan
1921 Travelled to Bagh caves in Madhya Pradesh to copy murals
1930 Created linocut Dandi March (Bapuji) after Mohandas K. Gandhi’s Satyagraha salt march. Produced illustrations for Rabindranath Tagore’s Bengali language learning book, Sahaj Path
1935-36 Organised art and craft exhibition at Indian National Congress sessions at Lucknow and designed temporary township at Faizpur at the invitation of M. K. Gandhi
1937-38 Executed set of posters for Indian National Congress session at Haripura (February 1938). Began planning and working on panels for Kirti Mandir at Baroda
1944 Published Silpokatha (or Speaking of Art)
1948 Designed Ramakrishna Temple at Kamarpukur. Designed certificates for Padmasri, Padma Bhushan, Bharat Ratna, etc., at the request of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru
1950 Received D Litt. from Banaras Hindu University. Created illustrations for Constitution of India
1951 Retired from Kala Bhavana, subsequently made Professor Emeritus
1953 Conferred with Padma Vibhushan by Government of India
1954 Elected Fellow of Lalit Kala Akademi. Retrospective exhibition in Calcutta
1956 Published Silpacarca (or The Practice of Art)
1957 Received D Litt. from Calcutta University
1964 Awarded Tagore Centenary Medal by Asiatic Society, Calcutta
1966 Died at Santiniketan
1983 Family collection of over 6,800 works of art was placed in the National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi
1983 National Gallery of Modern Art organised a centenary exhibition in New Delhi, inaugurated by his former student, then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi. The exhibition travelled to Bombay, Madras, Calcutta, Beijing, Tokyo, Osaka and Jakarta

Source: Rhythms of India: The Art of Nandalal Bose published by San Diego Museum of Art, 2008


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