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ARTIST PROFILE

Works of Bikash Bhattacharjee(1940-2006)

Articles

Bhattacharjee was born in Kolkata 1940. At a very early age he lost his father. The consequent struggle for survival left him with a deep sense of insecurity as well as empathy for the under-privileged, who often feature in his works. In 1963, he graduated with a Diploma in Fine Arts from Indian College of Art and Draftsmanship. Bhattacharjee began teaching at the Government College of Art & Craft and taught there till 1982. In 1964, he became a member of the Society of Contemporary Artists.

Besides painting the city and its people that he knew so well, Bhattacharjee is also an accomplished portrait painter. Realism is Bhattacharjee's forte. In the process, he explored the possibilities of oil as a medium to the extent that he could depict the exact quality of drapery or the skin tone of a woman, the moldering walls of an old building as if by magic. He also achieved mastery in capturing the quality of light. His love of cinema had a lot to do with this. Bhattacharjee has also worked extensively with pastel. He created a wide variety of characters in all walks of life, but his preoccupation is with female beauty. His use of art techniques of post Renaissance European oil painting could be responsible for creating this illusion of reality. Indeed, he leaves the viewer thinking, his canvases haunt, his paintings are an enigma that suggest and the mind is but a slave that must follow. He worked with many mediums - oil on canvas, tempera, oil on board, pastels on board, watercolor, crayon and pencil. Bikash lived in Kolkata all his life.

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