1917 - 95

Born in Bengal in 1917, Bimal Dasgupta was raised by his uncle, a government employee posted in Delhi. His uncle’s family did not support his ambition of becoming an artist and he joined Calcutta’s College of Arts and Crafts in 1937 with his father’s help. But the war interrupted his studies and he found himself working as a clerk in a war office where his talents were put to use as assistant director in charge of all artwork in Victory magazine. After the war, he worked at Dhoomimal Art Gallery, probably the first of its kind in India, and for advertising agencies, and eventually went on to teaching art at the College of Art, New Delhi for 14 years. A scholarship for six months to study and travel in Europe introduced him to gouache and oils as a medium.

Nature was very important to Dasgupta from his childhood and remained in his work till the end. After an early reputation as a landscape painter, he briefly experimented with cubism from his tour across Europe, and later dabbled in neo-tantrism, marking his abstract phase. He eventually turned to pure abstraction through the use of watercolours and acrylic.

Bimal Dasgupta was made a fellow of the Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, in 1989. Besides being exhibited widely in India and abroad, he also handled commissions for murals for the India pavilions at the International Trade Fairs in Moscow and Tokyo. He was honoured by the Sahitya Kala Parishad, New Delhi, in 1972.