Group 1890: India’s Indigenous Modernism NEW YORK | Mar 23, 2017 - Sep 30, 2017
MUMBAI | Dec 19, 2016 - Feb 28, 2017
DELHI | Sep 5, 2016 - Dec 3, 2016

A great number of short-lived but nonetheless significant art movements arose in Indian art over the twentieth century as Indian artists struggled with evolving or arriving at their identity as modern artists and an appropriate visual language of Indian modernism. One of the most significant amongst these is the artist collective, Group 1890, formed in 1962 with twelve young artists, led by the artist and art critic, J. Swaminathan. The group consisted of J. Swaminathan, Gulammohammed Sheikh, Himmat Shah, Jeram Patel, Ambadas, Jyoti Bhatt, Raghav Kaneria, Reddappa Naidu, Rajesh Mehra, Eric Bowen, S. G. Nikam and Balkrishna Patel. The group held one exhibition in 1963 in New Delhi that was inaugurated by the country’s Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru, and then never held a successive one, but their formulations of the time, including their beliefs and pronouncements on Indian art were significant. As a collective, Group 1890 faded into oblivion, never regrouping or showing together again. But the achievement of its member artists in later years have profoundly impacted and given fresh direction to Indian modernism, those such as J. Swaminathan, Gulammohammed Sheikh, Jeram Patel, Jyoti Bhatt and the sculptors Himmat Shah and Raghav Kaneria, with their widely diverse oeuvres and artistic concerns, the kernel of their artistic achievements traceable to Group 1890.