Renowned for successfully merging traditional imagery in modern paintings, Jogen Chowdhury is a leading artist of our times. Born in Faridpur, Bangladesh, 1939, Chowdhury graduated from the Government College of Art and Craft, Kolkata, in 1960, and subsequently received scholarship from the French government and went on to study at the Beaux-Arts de Paris in 1967.
It was after returning from France in the late 1960s that Chowdhury developed his individual style. Always a powerful artist, Chowdhury’s forte is painting in ink, watercolour and pastel. A favourite largely for his line drawings with ink, he explores the soft curves and angularities of contorted bodies using ink combined with pastels. Chowdhury freely uses the technique of crosshatching in his ink and pastel works. This has become the most discernible feature of Chowdhury’s style. He constructs volume by modulating light and shade and uses cross-hatching to develop an illusion of middle tonalities.
Chowdhury’s notable exhibitions include, “Jogen Chowdhury: Formative to Recent”, CIMA at Kolkata, in 2014; “Lignes de Meditation”, Gallery Veda at Chennai in 2012-2013; ‘A Calligraphy of Touch and Gaze”, presented by Kalakriti Art Gallery at ICIA, Mumbai, in 2008. Chowdhury has also had solo exhibitions at Gajah Gallery, Singapore; Gallerie Foundation for Indian Artists, Amsterdam and the Fine Art Resource, Berlin.
Chowdhury was honourable jury member, Singapore biennale exhibition of art, Singapore, in 2003 and was honoured with the Kalidas Samman by the Government of Madhya Pradesh, in 2001. In 1986, he received an award at the second biennale of Havana, Cuba. He was awarded the Prix le France de la Jeune Peinture at Paris, in 1966. His artworks are part of important collections in India and abroad.
Jogen Chowdhury lives and works out of New Delhi, Santiniketan and Kolkata.