18/09/1867 - 14/02/1938
He was born in Calcutta, West Bengal. He started painting
rather late in his life, probably around 1905, when
he was 38 years old. While in early years his painting
activity is sporadic, the entire decade of 1920s is
his most prolific and creative period. Yet it should
be noted that he was active for nearly twenty-five years.
Gaganendranath was one of the first modern painter of
India. In 1867 he for the first time established the
family theatre of the Tagore household called `Jurasanko
Theatre`. In theatre, Gaganendranath was more involved
in costume and set design as well as lighting. Gaganendranath
was an impressive organizer of bringing together including
the top most British colonial art minded administrators
which made it possible to establish the Oriental Society
of Indian Art in Calcutta, responsible for many historic
art promotion activities between 1907 and 1930 attracting
personalities like William Rothenstein (British artist),
Pavalova (Russian dancer), Co
- At St Xavier`s School he took brief interest in
drawing and painting.
- Gaganendranath was influenced and inspired by Japanese
Art after coming in contact with Kakuzo Okakura and
some other Japanese artists who came to India in 1902.
He learnt the technique of brush and ink from them.
- He was a self taught artist having no academic training
- 1908 Inaugural Exhibition: Indian Society of Oriental
Art, Calcutta (Also in 1910,12).
- 1909 Indian Society of Oriental Art Exhibition,
- 1911 Indian Society of Oriental Art, United Provinces
- 1911 Festival of Empire, Crystal Palace, England
(Organised by Indian Society of Oriental Art for George
- 1914 22nd Exhibition of Societe des Peintres Orientalistes
Francais, Grand Palais, Paris. Travelling to Belgium,
Holland and Imperial Institute, England.
- 1915-16 Indian Society of Oriental Art Exhibition,
Calcutta and Young Men`s Indian Association, Madras.
- 1924 Travelling Exhibition, USA (organised by American
Federation of Art and Indian Society of Oriental Art).
- 1928 Exhb. at Athenee Gallery, Organised by James
Cousins, Geneva, Switzerland.
- 2004 Manifestations II, organised by Delhi Art Gallery,
Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai and Delhi Art Gallery,
- 2005 Manifestations III, organised by Delhi Art
Gallery, Nehru Cen
- Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata.
- Bharat Kala Bhavan, Hindu University, Varanasi.
- Indian Museum, Kolkata.
- Kala Bhavan, Visva Bharati, Santiniketan.
- H.K.Kejriwal Collection and Karnataka Chitrakala
- National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi.
- Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
- Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi.
Gaganendranath, through his experimental play with
brush and colour, captured the charming capriciousness
of refracted light. A master of beautiful geometric
composition as he was Gaganendranaths work should yet
be characterized not as aesthetic in absolute sense,
but as emotive. His mind was on creating forms for their
own sake. His cartoons reflects his treatment of the
scenes of Calcutta and the funny side of the life of
its citizens bear testimony to his sensibility and his
power of acute observation.