Paritosh Sen

Paritosh Sen was born in Dhaka, now in Bangladesh, in 1918 in a noted Ayurved's family The world of nature, colour, movement fascinated him from his childhood as is clear from his collection of autobiographical vignettes, Jindabahar Lane, named after his Dhaka address. After finishing school, Sen ran away from home to join the Madras Art School headed by Devi Prosad Roy Chowdhury. His fellow-students their were K.C.S. Panicker, Prodosh Dasgupta, Gopal Ghosh and others. After finishing art school, Sen taught art at the Daly college in Indore. In 1943, he along with his friends formed the Calcutta group. In 1949, Sen left for Europe. In Paris, he studied at Andre Lhote's school, Academie Grand Chaumier, Ecole des Beaux Arts and Ecole des Louvre where he studied the history of painting. The sojourn abroad provided an exciting exposure. A meeting with Picasso left a deep impression in 1954, he returned to Calcutta. To earn a living, he joined the Netarhat School in Palamau, near Ranchi, as an art teacher. After a short stint there, Sen returned to Calcutta. He joined the newly opened school of printing technology as professor of design and layout.

In the early '60s, he went abroad to England and France. He was commissioned by the French government to design Bengali typography based on the script of Rabindranath Tagore. This was an interest that surfaced once again in the '80s. between 1970-7 1, he received the Rockefeller grant and went to New York. On his return, he created an installation on violence.

Between 1981-82, Sen had been Artist-in-Residence at Maryland Institute of Art, Baltimore. In 1985, Sen was invited by the National Institute of design at Ahmedbad to be an artist- in-residence. He taught a course in illustration. During his stay there he used the English translation of a piece from Jindabahar Lane call A Tree in My Village and made a folio-sized publication from it. It was a stimulating experiment where he wrote and illustrated the piece in ink on sensitised paper which acted as a negative and thereby excluded the negative film. It was one of the most fascinating exercises in 'marrying text with image.

In the course of his career, Sen's style of painting has undergone many changes. From the stylized to the voluminous, expressionist figures, he has traversed a long way. But there are continuities. For example, the drawing with bold, vigorous strokes, the use of volume m the figuration and sharp irony have been impressive elements in his work. Since 199 1, his work has become more sensuous and he uses more exuberant colors.

Paritosh Sen lives and works in Calcutta.

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Protesh Sen
The guessing game
Acrylic on paper
1995

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Protesh Sen
Young Boy chopping chicken
Acrylic on paper
39" x 39"
1983

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Protesh Sen
Music Lovers
Oil on paper
60" x 60"
1982