Jamini Roy


Untitled (Mother and Child) | New York, Rockefeller Plaza | gouache on paper | 73 x 34.2 cm.



“He was wholly in favor of making art meant for the collectivity and not just for the affluent few.”

Krishna Chaitanya, art historian


Jamini Roy began his career as a young artist painting portraits and impressionistic style landscapes, but by his late 30s began experimenting with Kalighat and Bengali Folk painting. Drawing upon those influences, he eventually forged the style of modern painting for which he is best known, a successful reinterpretation of traditional South Asian iconography by way of crisp, clean, modernist lines. He went on to become one of the most celebrated modernists in the history of Indian painting. 

Born in West Bengal in 1887, he studied at the Government School of Art in Kolkata from 1906 to 1914. His paintings were first exhibited at the art school in Kolkata in 1929, and the artist also had notable solo exhibitions in London in 1946 and in New York in 1953.

In 1955 he was honored with the Padma Bhushan, the Indian government’s third highest civilian award, and is a designated National Treasure of India along with Amrita Sher-Gil and Rabindranath Tagore.

He died in Kolkata in 1972 at the age of 85, a celebrated and revolutionary artist.


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Works by Jamini Roy

Specialists in South Asian Modern+Contemporary Art at Christie's

  • Deepanjana D. Klein PhD
    • South Asian Modern + Contemporary Art
    • New York
    • International Head of Department
    • dklein@christies.com
    • +1 212 636 2189
  • Sonal Singh

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