Father of Modern Indian sculpture

Image source: Google

Born into a poor barber’s family in Bengal’s Bankura district, Ramkinkar Baij is considered to be the “Father of Modern Indian sculpture”. Ramkinkar Baij was the earliest Indian artist to experiment with abstract sculptural forms. His oil on canvas paintings have a singular experimenting quality going beyond its time, unregimented by dogmas and with only one commitment - to be unstintingly creative. His tryst with art began at a young age; he would emulate the local idol maker (Ananta Sutradhar), sketching and making sculptures out of the red soil that was so abundant in Bankura.

It was at Shantiniketan that he was first exposed to the contemporary European art world. But despite this exposure to the west, Shantiniketan never imposed colonial ideals of art on its students, rather it stressed on remaining rooted to one’s culture. It was this liberal education and the guidance of masters like Rabindranath Tagore and Nandalal Bose that inspired Ramkinkar to eventually find his own seminal style.

The country’s first truly ‘modern’ sculptor, Baij’s sculptures were often monumental and possessed an inner movement, as seen in the Santhal Family or Mill Call, two of his best-known open-air sculptures in Santiniketan.

Image source: Google
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