Journal of Arts & Ideas, no. 32-33 (April 1999) p. Back material.


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New from Tulika Contemporary Art in Baroda

EDITED BY GUIAMMOHAMMED SHEIKH

The volume Contemporary Art in Baroda traces the evolution of Baroda as an important centre of contemporary art and art education, from the nineteenth century up to the last decade of the twentieth century.

It begins with a discussion, in the first chapter, of the historical background of culture in the erstwhile state of Baroda, leading up to the establishment of the Faculty of Fine Arts—an institution that pioneered art education at the university level. The tradition of murals, elaborately carved havelis and painted temples; the arrival of Raja Ravi Varma at the invitation of Maharaja Sayajirao Gaekwad that resulted in the formulation of an east-west dialogue; the establishment of a school of art at Kalabhavan and a specially designed museum and art gallery with the intention of imparting visual education in eastern and western forms of art; the commissioning of Nandalal Bose to paint murals at Kirti Mandir—all these were factors that came together in diverse, eclectic, yet sustaining ways, to shape the art and culture of the city.

The elaborate second chapter focuses on two decades of the building of the Faculty of Fine Arts, and the evolution of a committed system of art education that viewed art and knowledge as complementary forms and envisioned the new artist as a creative and articulate individual, aware of his past and present, constantly engaged in contemporary discourse. This vision of the pioneers of art education at the Faculty—Markand Bhatt, V.R. Amberkar, N.S. Bendre, Sankho Chaudhuri, K.G. Subramanyan, as also the careers and works of these artists and of the first generation of artists trained there, are discussed in detail.

The third and fourth chapters trace issues arising out of the changing art scenario and movements from the seventies till the present day, in the context of the national and international art scene. This is accompanied by a discussion of the works ofjyoti Bhatt, Jeram Patel, Raghav Kaneria, Nagji Patel, Bhupen Khakhar, Nasreen Mohamedi, Vivan Sundaram, Laxma Goud, Mrinalini Mukherjee, Dhruva Mistry, N.N. Rimzon and several others who have significantly contributed to contemporary art in India.

Art in its historical context; art and education as life-vocations; art as an effective deterrent to dehumanization; the formation of a distinct vision of art through a mingling of the past and the present, the immediate and the distant—these are some of the complex issues that the book attempts to articulate through its discussion of the work of three generations of artists in Baroda.

Contents Foreword; Introduction; 'The Backdrop' by Gulammohammed Sheikh; 'A Post-Independence Initiative in Art' by Nilima Sheikh; 'Envisioning the Seventies and Eighties' by Ajay Sinha; 'The Last Decade' by Ashish Rajadhyaksha; Notes; Bibliography; Chronology of Events; Index; Acknowledgements

280 x 220 mm Hard cover 350 illus. incl. 69 col. plates 296 pages Rs 2250

Tulika

35A/1 (Third Floor, Shahpurjat, New Delhi 110 049 Tel: 649 1448, Telefax: 649 7999


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