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Lot 51
Ganesh Pyne | (i) Jester With a Ball (ii) Untitled

Date of Birth: 1937 - 2013

Medium: Pen and ink on graph paper

Size: 10 x 8 inches (each), 25.5 x 20 cms (each)

Provenance: Collection of a reputed art gallery, New Delhi. Acquired from Saffronart auction, August 2021.

Estimate: ₹ 2,00,000 - ₹ 3,00,000


Ganesh Pyne was obsessed with death. He could’nt forget his first brush with death, in the summer of 1946, when communal riots had rocked Kolkata. His family was forced out of their crumbling mansion. As he roamed around the city, he stumbled upon a pile of dead bodies. On the top was the body of a stark naked old woman, with wounds on her breast. No wonder then his paintings rarely have light backgrounds, and blue and black happen to be his favorite colors. Death also finds its way back into his canvas through different motifs. Working mostly in tempera, his paintings are rich in imagery and symbolism. Pyne was born in Kolkata and grew up in a decaying mansion. He also grew up on stories told by his grandmother, folk stories, mythological stories, and fairy tales. He spent several evenings in smoky Kolkata cafes discussing communism and Picasso with his friends. “My childhood memories revolve around Kolkata. The sounds and smells of this city fill my being. I love Kolkata.” He says.