Reshaping the contours
Belonging to the post- Independence generation of modernist artists from Bengal, Rabin Mondal grew up with his experiences of Bengal Famine, debilitating childhood and witnessing the suffering of violence torn years in Kolkata in 1960’s and 1970’s.
Kingdom Of Exile is the ongoing retrospective show in the Capital that showcases the deep marks on his psyche which found expression in his art.
“For me, art is my profession and passion both, whatever I see, I express it through my paintings. At the age of nine, from the very early boyhood I used to see my father making mechanical engineering drawings on a board. At that time it was very attractive for me. I used to see drawings and paint them. In this way I gradually got involved in drawing and painting. What was very inspiring for me was the response I got from known ones.”
“There is a very personal attitude to all my paintings. When we used to stay at Howrah at that time I experienced famine and many other unsocial incidents. I wanted to convey the story of the many unspoken victims and thanks to my art, through which I got the chance. I never intended to make paintings that give pleasure; art always came automatically to me. Whenever I sat down to do something I always ended up drawing or painting. I never accepted abstract art,” the artist further noted.
Conveying great power and strength of artistic intent, Rabin Mondal’s art is a significant milestone in Indian modernism, made stronger by his unswerving commitment to his art during his entire career in rejection of populist and market demands. Mondal noted, “I have always believed art is not for pleasure but it’s the expression. I just try to visually explain my feelings and my ideas about my country or my locations. I try to capture my experiences through my paintings and drawings, I can only say this much as I am not a good speaker.”