Manjit Bawa

Modern Miniatures | Recent Paintings
April 8 - March 27, 2000
New York

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March 2000 New York - Bose Pacia Modern presents an exhibition of paintings by New Delhi artist Manjit Bawa entitled Modern Miniatures Recent Paintings. The show will run from April 08 through May 27. The gallery is located at 508 West 26th Street, 11th Floor, in Chelsea. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday from 12-6 p.m. and by appointment. This is Bose Pacia Modern's inaugural exhibition in the gallery's new Chelsea location.

On view is a collection of recent canvases and miniature works on paper by Manjit Bawa, one of India's most prominent contemporary artists. Bawa's paintings are modeled in a surreal manner and can be placed in a tradition of innovation and experiment that evokes elements of line and form of Kalighat and the Company School paintings, to the miniatures of the Mughal and Rajput ateliers.

Mumbai based critic Ranjit Hoskote, writes in his catalogue essay that, "Bawa's art springs from the deft management of paradoxes, the melding of East and West into a strikingly hybrid image that renders irrelevant the reductive claims of Western Orientalism as well as of Indian nativism. Manjit Bawa's canvases and miniatures are populated with marvelous animals that defy zoology; brooding sages and pensive virgin-goddesses robed in the mystery of unknown motives, undeclared intentions. Often, humans and animals engage in a wordless dialogue that throws its participants back onto an older, nearly forgotten language of instinct and intuition. Standing before these paintings, we realize that Bawa has long been preoccupied with the theme of a universal language of communication."

Standing in the gallery the viewer is surrounded by fantastic figures both human and animal. His figures are suspended in a world of vibrant color, of solitude and of peaceful coexistence, themes that reflect the artist's intimacy with Hindu Mysticism and Sufism.

Manjit Bawa was born in the small Punjabi town of Dhuri in 1941, he studied art in Delhi and worked in London between 1964 and 1971. Bawa has participated in numerous important group exhibitions and has had solo exhibitions worldwide. He is included in several important public and private collections. This exhibition marks the artist's North American debut.