Exhibition brings out lyricism in sculptor Dhanraj work

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Mumbai, Aug 3 (IANS) A retrospective exhibition highlighting the musicality in Indian sculptor Dhanraj Bhagat’s work, is being showcased at the National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) here.

The exhibition titled “Dhanraj Bhagat (1917-1988): Journey from the Physical to the Spiritual” has over 400 works on display, including sketches and sculptures.

“Bhagat evoked brilliantly the inner music in his take on the iconic Nataraja or Dancing Shiva, in the elongated lyrical limbs of the lord as though swaying in the tune of the music,” NGMA said in a statement.

Music also translates in his flowing sketches of women and musicians with almost ethereal quality, it added.

Born in Lahore in 1917, Bhagat, in his earlier depictions showed rural men and women involved in daily activities, inspired by what he saw around him.

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He later joined the Mayo School of Art, and served as the head of the sculpture department at the College of Art, New Delhi for three decades.

The 1977, Padma Shri awardee, worked with mediums like clay, wood, metal or cement, and seemed to have introduced to his work a certain lyrical form.

Bhagat’s style of sculpting romanticism in an objective subject took a spiritual turn in his later years.

As his works began to be dominated by a minimalist geometry through which he formed strong images of monarchs, gods and celestial beings, he rendered a spiritual touch to his work.

The exhibition seeks to capture the moods and styles of the artist from his initial years to the later simplified geometric forms and icons.

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The extensive retrospective exhibition marks the sculptor’s centenary year, and is now on display in Mumbai till August 14.



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