19 Facts About Abanindranath Tagore


Abanindranath Tagore was the principal artist and creator of the "Indian Society of Oriental Art".


Abanindranath Tagore was the first major exponent of Swadeshi values in Indian art.


Abanindranath Tagore founded the influential Bengal school of art, which led to the development of modern Indian painting.


Abanindranath Tagore's work was so successful that it was eventually accepted and promoted as a national Indian style within British art institutions.


Abanindranath Tagore was born in Jorasanko, Calcutta, British India, to Gunendranath Tagore and Saudamini Devi.


Abanindranath Tagore's grandfather was Girindranath Tagore, the second son of "Prince" Dwarkanath Tagore.


Abanindranath Tagore was a member of the distinguished Tagore family and a nephew of the poet Rabindranath Tagore.

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Abanindranath Tagore learned art while studying at Sanskrit College, Kolkata in the 1880s.


In 1890, Tagore attended the Calcutta School of Art where he learnt to use pastels from O Ghilardi, and oil painting from C Palmer, European painters who taught in that institution.


Abanindranath Tagore left Sanskrit College after nine years of study and studied English as a special student at St Xavier's College, which he attended for about a year and a half.


Abanindranath Tagore had a sister, Sunayani Devi, who was a painter.


Abanindranath Tagore's philosophy rejected the "materialistic" art of the West and came back to Indian traditional art forms.


Abanindranath Tagore was influenced by the Mughal school of painting as well as Whistler's Aestheticism.


Abanindranath Tagore believed that Western art was "materialistic" in character, and that India needed to return to its own traditions to recover its spiritual values.


Abanindranath Tagore believed that Indian traditions could be adapted to express these new values, and to promote a progressive Indian national culture.


Abanindranath Tagore maintained throughout his life a long friendship with the London-based artist, author and eventual president of London's Royal College of Art, William Rothenstein.


Abanindranath Tagore ended up in Calcutta, where he drew and painted with Tagore and his students, attempting to absorb elements of Bengal School style into his own practice.


However limited Rothenstein's experiments with the styles of early Modernist Indian painting were, the friendship between him and Abanindranath Tagore ushered in a crucial cultural event.


Siva Kumar's Paintings of Abanindranath Tagore is a path-breaking book redefining Tagore's art.