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London gets a taste of Amrita Shergil


Akanksha Banerji,CNN-IBN
Jun 20, 2007 at 06:00am IST

London: The Tate Modern gallery in London is holding its first ever solo exhibition of Amrita Sher-Gil's works, who is one of the pioneers of modern Indian art.

There are also some who called Shergil India's Frida Kahlo.

"I think Amrita is well known in India but not so much here in Europe. This is a good opportunity for people to introduce them to her,” says Assistant Curator, Tate Modern, Ann Coxon.

Trained in Italy and France, Shergil became the youngest ever associate of the prestigious grand salon in Paris. While the West may have given her the training, India gave her work substance. After her return to India in 1934, she painted the poverty she saw round her.

"There’s also kind of deeper sense of existential pain that she carried and transferred to how she saw things. It’s romantic in one sense. She is projecting a sense of incapacity – women and men from the hills. There’s a greater vibrancy, color as a statement and that give a strength,” says artist and Shergill's nephew, Vivan Sundaram.

Amrita Shergil's death at 28 has always been shrouded in mystery. She painted nearly 160 works in just 11 years as an artist and will be remembered as a woman who was far ahead of her times.

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