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Amrita Sher - Gil (1913 1941)

Old Masters

Artist Amrita Sher - Gil Amrita Sher - Gil was born on January 30 1913 in Budapest, Hungary. Ervin Baktay guided her by critiquing her work and gave her an academic foundation to grow on. She used servants as models of her paintings. Though she was already painting since the age of five she formally started learning painting at age eight. In 1924 she got enrolled at Santa Annunziata, an Art School at Florence, Italy. At the age of sixteen, She sailed to Europe to train as a painter at Paris. She drew inspiration from European painters such as Paul Cezanne and Paul Gauguin. Her early paintings display a significant influence of the western modes of painting, especially as being practised in the Bohemian circles of Paris in the early 1930s. In 1932, she made her first important work, Young Girls, which led to her election as an Associate of the Grand Salon in Paris in 1933, making her the youngest ever and the only Asian to have received this recognition. This painting was awarded a Gold Medal at Grand Salon. In 1934, she began a rediscovery of the traditions of Indian art and was greatly impressed and influenced by the Mughal and Pahari schools of painting and cave paintings at Ajanta Caves.

Amrita Sher-Gil was an eminent Indian painter, sometimes known as India's Frida Kahlo and considered an important women painter of 20th century India, whose legacy stands at par with that of the Masters of Bengal Renaissance. She was amongst Nine Masters, whose work was declared as art treasures by The Archaeological Survey of India, in 1976 and 1979. The Government of India has declared her works as National Art Treasures and a postage stamp depicting her painting 'Hill Women' was released in 1978 in India, A road in Delhi was named after her as Amrita Shergill Marg.