Acclaimed Indian painter Ganesh Pyne, who effortlessly blended modernism with a traditional Indian style, died in Kolkata Peerless Hospital after a cardiac arrest on March 12. He was 76, according to Kolkata-based artist Sukhamoy Majumder who spoke over the telephone to this correspondent.
Pyne was born in 1937 in Kolkata. He used to paint since his childhood. After finishing his schooling, he joined the Government College of Art and Craft in Kolkata. He started his career as a watercolourist in the Bengal School mode. He was one of the founders of the society of contemporary artists of Kolkata, and was highly influenced by the paintings of Abanindranath Tagore and Gaganendranath Tagore.
Pyne’s eerie images of distressing figures and a terrible ambiance drew attention to a world beyond the familiar. He did few works and keen collectors wait years for a single piece of his creations.
Pyne, as a young painter, started off illustrating children’s books. He worked laboriously on very few paintings every year and reportedly his finances depended on how much money they fetched. His first solo exhibition was organised in Delhi in the late ’60s.
Pyne participated in various prestigious international shows all over the world including the Paris Biennale in 1969, the erstwhile West Germany in 1970, International Festival of Paintings in France, 1975; Contemporary Art of Asia, Japan, 1980; Modern Indian Paintings, USA, Contemporary India Art, UK; Indische Kunst Heute, West Germany, 1982; Timeless Art, Bombay, 1989 and more. He received several prestigious awards for his outstanding contribution to Indian art.