Ramkinkar Baij  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Ramkinkar Baij (May 20, 1906 - August 2, 1980) is an sculptor, known as the Pioneer of Modern Indian Sculpture.

Early life

Baij was born in an economically modest family in the Bankura district of the modern state of West Bengal in India. While in his mid-teens Ramkinkar used to paint portraits of Indian freedom fighters involved in the Non-Cooperation Movement against the British rulers of India. At age 16 he got noticed by the renowned journalist Ramanand Chatterjee. Four years later Ramkinkar joined Rabindranath Tagore's university at Santiniketan as a student of fine arts. After obtaining a diploma from the university he went on to head the sculpture department.


Being no introvert or recluse, Baij responded to the a natural zest for life, and took a great interest in human figures, body language, and in the general human drama. Modern Western art and pre and post-classical Indian art were his main point of reference. He used local material advantageously, and worked combining the skills of a modeller and a carver. His paintings too take on expressionist dimensions like his sculptures, which are filled with force and vitality.

Some of his sculptures are preserved and displayed at locations including Kala Bhavan, Santiniketan. Late Rani Chanda Collection & Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta, H.K. Kejriwal Collection & Karnataka Chitrakala Parishat, Bangalore, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi, Reserve Bank of India, New Delhi, Jane and Kito de Boer, Dubai, and the Delhi Art Gallery in New Delhi.

A portrait bust in bronze by a student of Ramkinkar at Santiniketan, the sculptor K. S. Radhakrishnan, is found in the entrance of the Museum of Modern Art in Bhopal, India.

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Ramkinkar Baij" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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