MUMBAI | Jul 20, 2015 - Sep 12, 2015
NEWYORK | Jun 7, 2016 - Sep 3, 2016
DAG brings to New York the first-ever retrospective of Indian modernist Rabin Mondal, whose artistic oeuvre stands uniquely apart even within the extraordinary diversity and range of modern Indian art. Rabin Mondal’s celebrated King Series, a set of eight powerful works on the theme of power and its corrosive effects on those that chase it, along with their preparatory drawings has been chosen to participate in the Shanghai Biennale to be held in November 2016.
Belonging to the post-Independence generation of modernist artists in Bengal, Rabin Mondal grew up with experiences of the Bengal Famine, debilitating childhood illness and the strife and suffering of the violence-torn years in Calcutta of the 1960s and 1970s. These deeply marked his psyche and found expression in his art as he trained his unrelenting gaze on the darkness in the human soul, plumbing society’s underbelly in his continued explorations of the themes of corruption of power, alienation, suffering and tyranny. His expressionistic imagery, figuration, colours and compositions that have been compared with primitivist and tribal art heighten these themes, overwhelming the viewer who is permitted no escape from their claustrophobic confines, terrifying for their unremitting hopelessness.
Conveying great power and strength of artistic intent, Rabin Mondal’s art is a significant milestone in Indian modernism, made stronger by his unswerving commitment to his art during his entire career in rejection of populist and market demands. This retrospective, it is hoped, will bring that much needed revisiting of his art and recognition to this very unique Indian modernist.
This retrospective garnered critical and lay appreciation during its showing in India in 2014-15 in DAG’s New Delhi and Mumbai gallery locations and by bringing it to its New York address, it is hoped to create a wider appreciation for the work of this significant and singular artist.