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"Every Child is an Artist. The Problem is How to Remain an Artist once we Grow up"-Pablo Picasso.


Dhiraj Chowdhury

September 1936


June 1, 2018 Kolkata


Government College of Arts and Crafts, Kolkata and Delhi Polytechnic, Delhi College of Art.


Birla Academy of Arts and Culture, Calcutta and All India Society of Fine Arts and Crafts, New Delhi.
1998 50 years of freedom struggle, retrospective, Rabindra Bhavan, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi.
1999 On the threshold of the new millennium, Kumar Gallery, New Delhi.
2000 Traveling exhibition, Sweden, Mural about love, South of France, Love paintings exhibited at the Millennium Festival, St. Albans, UK, Saint Petersburg, Florida, United States.
2001 Retrospective, Watercolor
1955-2000 at Art Konsult New Delhi


2011 Melange, Harrington Street Arts Centre, Kolkata


Annual Celebration Exhibition 2010, Kumar Art Gallery, New Delhi
Annual Exhibition 2009, La-Mere, Sri Aurobindo Institute of Culture, Kolkata



Dhiraj Choudhary makes no secret of the fact that he is a politically and socially motivated artist. He says: For me, art is not simply an exercise in aesthetics or technical expertise. That's the reason why I never felt the need to dedicate myself to art for art's sake. Therefore, most of my creative forces have been used to portray the ills of our society and in doing so, the hungry, the dispossessed, the tortured, and the injured have invariably infiltrated my works. The pictures I paint may not be pretty, but they are an expression of my love for humanity and my genuine concern for the world at large. My art is not a pleasure trip. It is the battlefield of my 50-year struggle for freedom, which continues! Born in 1936, in what is now Bangladesh, Dhiraj Choudhary lived the fight for freedom, but he does not believe it is over. There are still promises to keep and goals to achieve. He also believes that every day is a struggle for an artist to overcome his low status.


Initially, in the 1960s, Choudhary made the condition of the oppressed and shifted the focus of his work away from him. Be it the hunger-stricken peasants of Bengal clamoring for some food, the miserable farmers of the south gathering the harvest in other fields, a murdered agitator lying on a Mumbai street, vagrants or prostitutes, Dhiraj gives them an extremely ironic. They are all supposedly free citizens of a country that was supposed to wake up to freedom but didn't. Some of his pen and ink drawings from the 1970s and 1980s are terrifying and reflect his intense reaction to witnessing the horrors of Indian society. Beggars fight with animals on the road over leftover food. There are scenes of a party, where the rich dice and stuff morsels of the poor into their insatiable mouths. This metamorphosis of his disenchantment fueled the Banalata series of the 1990s, where Choudhary painted the character from Jibananda Da's famous poem, Nattore's Banalata Sen.


In 1999, with an absolute shift in perspective, Chowdhury endeavored to focus our attention on the theme of Love, something he believes can eradicate the violence and greed we face every day. He has thoroughly explored the concept and emotion of Love, including its dark side from which arrogance, envy, and resentment are born. The sentiment and objective of it remain unchanged, although I believe that art can play an active role in creating social consciousness and I, in my way, would try to light a candle in the darkness of ignorance and greed.


In his later works, the crucial medium is acrylic paint used on canvas. He has used all primary colors with small tints of wash, making the painting come alive with vibrancy. As his strong point is drawing, we also see strong and bold lines that cut out the figures and shapes in the background. In this series, Choudhary's themes are simple and communicative. He uses images of man and woman, mother and child, clowns, or natural images such as flowers, foliage, animals, birds, and butterflies. In 2001, Dhiraj was invited to Hertfordshire, United Kingdom, to curate an exhibition and conduct art workshops on the theme of Love. He currently teaches at the Delhi College of Art, part of the University of Delhi.


He passed away on June 1, 2018 Kolkata.


Notification - We do not usually display Dhiraj Chowdhary's work, only send it to private art collectors and interested art buyers.


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