Untitled | New York, Rockefeller Plaza | oil on canvas | 132.1 x 101.6 cm
“His technique of applying color to canvas brings the canvas alive with its translucency and near transparency, providing the viewer with a sense of immense tranquility and a mood of meditation.”
Uma Nair, Times of India
Known for his brilliant Neo-Tantric paintings, Biren De forged an artistic career across five decades, beginning as a portrait painter. The early works were figurative and strongly influenced by Post-Impressionist European painters. He gradually evolved into abstraction and by the sixties had abandoned figuration altogether, developing what became known as his signature “Neo-tantric” style, a mode dominated by concentric rings, crescents and orbs.
“My approach to art is exploratory,” he once said. “As a child, I very often used to run away from home, just to be able to go somewhere, to see and know about things myself. The same runaway child probably still persists in me. Each blank canvas I take up extends to me the eternal call of adventure and I go, riding the vehicle of paint and brush.”
Born in Bangladesh, De traveled to Kolkata, where he attended the Government College of Arts and Craft. In 1951 he exhibited at the Salon De Mai, in Paris, and in 1959, he traveled to the United States on a Fulbright Scholarship. Throughout his career, his work has been shown around the world, in places like The Royal Academy of Art, in London, at the 1988 Tokyo festival of India, and at biennales in Venice, Tokyo, Sao Paulo, Mainichi and Sydney. He passed away in 2011 in New Delhi.