Rare sketches of Bengal famine on show in Delhi

New Delhi: Sketches from the Bengal famine series by Chittaprasad Bhattacharya will be exhibited at the India International Centre here Thursday by the Delhi Art Gallery during the Delhi edition of the Kovalam Literary Festival.

The famine series by the pioneer of contemporary reality art from the Bengal school, draws its inspiration from the hunger and food shortage that swept through West Bengal during World War II in the 1940s. The pen and ink sketches are figurative compositions of the hungry and ailing, foraging for food.

"The exhibition brings history, literature and art together. The Kovalam literary festival will be an ideal platform to pay tribute to one of the greatest political artists Bengal has ever thrown up. Chittaprasad`s drawings shine in all their wretched, heart-rending and historic detail," curator Kishore Singh said Monday.

The famine series by the painter with Left wing empathy is based on his tour of Midnapore during 1943-44.

In 1943 and 1944, Bhattacharya, who was inducted into the Communist Party of India by party secretary P.C. Joshi, was sent to cover the Bengal famine.

Bhattacharya travelled extensively through the famine-impacted areas, drawing and writing about his experiences in the party paper, People`s War.


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