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RADHA VILAS

RADHA VILAS

Item Description:

NATIONAL ART TREASURE - NON-EXPORTABLE ITEM (Please refer to the Terms and Conditions of Sale at the back of the catalogue.)


PROPERTY OF AN ARTIST


Oil on canvas pasted on board

1931

54 1/2 x 35 3/8 in. (138.5 x 90 cm.)

Signed, dated and inscribed 'G.H. Nagarkar / BOMBAY 1931' lower right and further inscribed 'THE ARTIST AND EXHIBITOR_ G.H. NAGARKAR. / MEHENDALE BUILDING. GIRGAUM_ / BACK ROAD / BOMBAY, NO. 4. / PRICE_ RS. 3000/- THREE THOUSAND. / TITLE OF THE EXHIBIT _ / (RADHA VILAS) / RADHA - "IN THEIR MIDST THOU ART A LITTLE / CHILD TO ME." / "WHEN I AM ALON [sic] THOU GROWEST IN MY / ALL IN ALL"' and signed 'G.H. Nagarkar' on a label on reverse



EXHIBITED :

Modern Indian Art, India Society, New Burlington Galleries, London, 10-22 December, 1934.


Master Strokes VIII, an Exhibition of Paintings, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai, 23 -29 November, 2010.



LITERATURE :

Master Strokes VIII, an Exhibiton of Paintings, Jehangir Art Gallery, exhibition catalogue, Mumbai, 2010, unpaginated, illustrated.



Nagarkar was born in the small town of Chandurbazar in northeast Maharashtra in 1892. After completing his secondary education from Nagpur, he moved to Mumbai and joined the Sir J. J. School of Art. In 1919, Captain Gladstone Solomon, the newly appointed principal of the School introduced two new art classes to the curriculum and started training students in mural painting and painting nudes from live models. Nagarkar belonged to the first batch of these students, who began their training by completing a large mural on the walls of the Art School. The Governor General of Bombay, Lord Lloyd, was so impressed with the mural that he commissioned the same students, headed by Nagarkar, to paint the interiors of the Durbar Hall at Government House, present day Raj Bhavan, for which the Governor presented Nagarkar with a Gold Medal.



In 1922, the Government Diploma in Art was introduced for the first time and Nagarkar was one of the first students to attend the course. The class aimed to expose the students who were trained in the European academic style to the traditional Indian arts, thus combining European naturalism with an Indian sensibility. In 1924, under Solomon, the students executed a number of traditional Indian artworks that were exhibited at the famous British Empire Exhibition held at Wembley, in London. A special room was created for the exhibition, with the walls and ceiling covered with paintings depicting images from poetry, agriculture, industry, music and sculpture, painted by a group of Solomon's students. The class, and the subsequent projects, laid the foundation for the emergence of the Bombay Revivalist School, the first western Indian modern art movement. Under Solomon's guidance, the Bombay School flourished, spearheaded by two artists, Gunwant Nagarkar and Jagannath Ahivasi.



Shortly after completing his Diploma at the J. J. School of Art, Nagarkar joined the institution as a teacher, teaching Indian style painting, a new class introduced by the principal. Nagarkar's mastery over the wash technique was encouraged by Solomon and taught to his students. After working extensively in watercolours for almost a decade, Naragkar then shifted his focus to oils from the early 1930s, as seen in the current example.



*Antiquity or Art Treasure - Non-Exportable Item. Please refer to the Terms and Conditions of Sale.

Condition:

The colours of the original are similar to the catalogue illustration. Minor rubbing along the edges of the canvas. Scattered areas of paint loss throughout the canvas have been retouched and are partially visible to the naked eye and fluoresce under UV light. The torso of Vishnu and Krishna have received the most conservation with further areas of retouching in Radha and Krishna's hair and in Radha's right forearm and shoulder. The painting now appears to be in stable condition but may benefit from fumigation. A horizontal stretcher mark visible along upper edge. Overall fair condition.

About The Artist:

GUNWANT H. NAGARKAR (1892 - 1956)

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