1976 Namkhana, West Bengal
2000 Bachelor of Visual Arts, Government College of Arts and Crafts, Kolkata
SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2007 Echoes of Ecstasy, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi
2004 Pradarshak Gallery, Mumbai
2004 Nehru Centre, Mumbai
2003 Art Gallery of India, Pune, Maharashtra
2003 World Trade Centre, Arcade, Mumbai
1999 Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2008 Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai
2007 Emerging Sensibilities, Colorado-Gallery G Bangalore, Karnataka
2007 Conversation with Colors, Colorado-Time & Space Gallery Bangalore, Karnataka
2006 Decoding 9 Jewels, Colorado-Kitab Mahal, Mumbai
2002-03 Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata
2002-03 Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Mumbai
2000 Gaganandra Shilpa Pradarsansala Information Centre, Kolkata
2005 Harmony Show, Nehru Centre, Mumbai
2003, 04, 05 Annual Exhibition, Bombay Art Society, Mumbai
2002, 03 Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata and Mumbai
1998, 99th Annual Rajya Charukala Exhibition Information Centre, Kolkata
1996, 98, 99 Annual All India Exhibition, Indian Society of Oriental Arts, Calcutta
1998, 99th Annual Exhibition of the All India Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta
1995-2000 Annual Exhibition of Government College of Arts and Crafts, Kolkata
HONORS AND AWARD
2003 Hindustan Pencil Ltd. Award from the Bombay Art Society, Mumbai
2001 Governor Awards
Camlin Award 2001, Bombay
1999 University Award from Government College of Arts and Crafts, Kolkata
1996 Academy Award from the Calcutta Academy of Fine Arts
1996 Gopen Roy Award from the Indian Society of Oriental Arts, Calcutta
1995-96 University Awards for Best Pencil Study, Government College of Arts and Crafts, Kolkata
ABOUT THE ARTIST
Jagannath Paul graduated from the Government College of Arts & Crafts, Kolkata. He has won many prestigious awards.
Prominent Indian artist Jagannath Paul is famous for his mixed media works that explore themes of togetherness and intimacy; Through semi-abstract images of men's and women's faces, he explores how each person can contain a multitude of personalities.
He is known for his charcoals on paper or canvas. His works enhance the drama of black and white by introducing solid blocks of paint, limited to reds, yellows, and oranges. The contrast sets the mood of the work, highlighting the character he paints. His skillful interpretation of the female form shows an innate understanding and mastery of the subject.
Jagannath Paul himself tells the story of him: I was born in Namkhana, West Bengal, in a very humble family in a village in West Bengal. My father was a farmer and my mother was a cook at a nearby boarding school. Early on, one of my teachers recognized my talent for art and encouraged me. So I started making sculptures and painting signs, which became a fairly successful side business. In high school, the same teacher gave me a book that listed all the art colleges in Kolkata, which was the closest city to where I lived, located about 5 hours away by bus.
With the support of my teacher, I traveled to Calcutta in 1994, when I was 16, to explore art colleges and the type of education they could offer. When I arrived, I was simply surprised to see the bustling crowds, traffic, and tall buildings. I've never seen anything like it! Looking back, I think it was the only time in my life when I felt real fear.
While visiting Calcutta, I stopped to ask a group of students how to get to one of the art colleges, and a young man kindly guided me there. Tonight turned out to be a fateful interaction: I missed the last train to my town and spent the night sleeping on the station benches. The next morning I met the same boy at the train station, whose parents generously invited me to stay at his house until I could find better accommodation. The boy, Pritwish Bhowmick, eventually became one of my lifelong friends.
Pritwish and his family helped me get back on my feet, even finding me a room to rent and introducing me to his art teacher, Subuddha Ghosh, who offered me a job teaching art to young children. He also offered to train me for free, which was very generous. While working with him, I applied and was accepted to the top 2 art colleges in Kolkata, Santiniketan on the outskirts of the city, and Government College of Art and Craft in the urban center. I chose the latter so I could continue teaching and therefore support myself financially.
While in college, I met Sumit Basu, a Bollywood film production designer who promised to help me get started in the film industry if I was ever interested in another fateful interaction. So when I graduated from art school in 1999, I thought: why not try my fortune in Bombay? I accepted Sumit's offer and quickly found a job in Bombay, as well as a very small room to rent in Dharavi, Asia's largest slum.
After adjusting to my new job, I soon began to feel like painting and expressing my ideas. With my limited savings, I bought art supplies and painted on my days off. My room was so small that the canvases could barely fit inside! Once I finished 4 5 paintings, I took them to some galleries in Bombay. One of the galleries took two of my works and in a few days, the gallery owner sold them. He ordered more and more and continued to sell the paintings quickly. It was incredible.
From there, the truth is that my success as an artist came quickly. One of Bombay's leading galleries contacted me to promote my work, and when I had my first solo exhibition in 2004 at the Nehru Centre, it was completely sold out. That's when I got married and finally moved out of Dharavi, and I haven't looked back since.
Since then I have been fortunate to show my work in galleries across India and art fairs around the world. I have even won several awards, including the Hindustan Pencil Ltd. Award from the Bombay Art Society. I know my talent was an essential part of becoming an artist, but more importantly, I had a lot of focus in those early years. I knew what I wanted and I went after it. I didn't have a set schedule and I adapted along the way, making the most of every opportunity that came my way.
Now I also try to consciously focus on gratitude for the help I have received in life and the good things that have happened to me. Strangers have reached out to help me, from Pritwish to Subuddha to Sumit. I hope to pass on this generosity to the next generation of talented Indian artists.
Notification - We do not usually display Jagannath Paul's work, only send it to private art collectors and interested art buyers.
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