INDIAN CONTEMPORARY ARTIST
- Born in 1939 in Faridpur, Bangladesh
- Lives and works in Shantiniketan, West Bengal, India
UNDERSTANDING THE ARTIST
Jogen Chowdhury is predominantly popular for his line drawings with ink. The use of ink combined with pastels has been his forte, with which he explores the soft curves and angularities of contorted bodies.
A technique that the artist generously used in his ink and pastel works is crosshatching. In fact, it has become the most recognizable feature of Chowdhury’s style. With crosshatching, he’s developed the illusion of middle tonalities, creating volume by the use of modulating light and shade.
Chowdhury’s works have been greatly affected by the traumatic effects of the Partition, the thoughtless political anarchy, terrorism and killings in West Bengal. He can see how the society and culture is gradually transforming to chaos and unkindness. This dominance of inhumanity over man, peace and sanity disturbs him. How partisan politics, terrorism and violence are destroying the network of finer social fabric of the people is brought to the fore in his works.
Jogen Chowdhury’s art is not only a form of self-expression but a reflection of a collective and subjective consciousness. Having experienced the traumatic effects of the Partition, dislocation and a sense of isolation, his figures reflect an intractable solitude and the sufferings of human. The socio-political injustices can even be seen in his individual figures as well as the couple paintings.
Distorted lines and dark backgrounds define the ideology behind his oeuvre. With distorted lines and strokes he expresses the nuances of human feelings and human emotions and their subtle ups and downs in the daily experiences. The dark, vacant background which seems to vanish projects a spatial sequence. These forms help him interpret the human form as simplified, exaggerated way, thus intensifying its visual and conceptual expression.
Jogen Chowdhury, Bakasur, 2011, pen, ink mixed media on paper, 15.16 x 11.22
Jogen Chowdhury, Boy Playing, 1990, ink and pastel on paper pasted on board, 10.5 x 14.5 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Face of a girl, 2003, mixed media on paper, 8 x 8 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Hand, 2002, pen and ink with pastel on paper, 11.0 x 14.0 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Lady, 2006, watercolour and pastel on paper pasted on board, 19.5 x 27 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Man and Woman, 1992, ink and pastel on paper pasted on board, 22 x 30 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Man with Raised Hand, 2002, pen and ink with pastel on paper, 14 x 11 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Woman With Silver Necklace, 2014, pen & ink mixed media on paper, 12.7 x 12.8
Jogen Chowdhury, Untitled, 1980, pen and ink with pastel on paper pasted on board, 7.5 x 7.5 in
Jogen Chowdhury, Untitled (2 works), 2008, ink on paper, 12.5 x 9.5 in