Saturday, 3 March 2012

M F Hussain: Painting the Art of India

Maqbool Fida Husain, known as H F Husain, was in the news more for the controversies created due to some of the paintings. Born in India on September 17, 1915, this wonderful artist owned a score of paintings under his name. His art is fascinating and his canvasses are impressive. And it is no wonder that he was called as Picasso of India. In fact he was originally influenced by the great German painter Emil Nolde. He had got much inspiration from Austrian artists Oskar Kokoschka, both of these artists were well-know expressionists painters.
Career of M F Husain
with having all the colours of a rainbow in his personality, M. F. Hussain was a mysterious person even for those who lived near to him. he was a painter, a photographer, a film producer and a member of parliament of India

Experimenting was his habit and rejoicing the art of painting was his natural temperament. From his early career, he started using the subjects of mythological themes.
His paintings are believed to capture the very beautiful mythological events onto canvases.Starting his career doing the film posters, he would become known as an artist in 1940s and 50s. He was a leading member of the group known as Progressive Artists’ Group formed by another well-known Indian artist, Frances Newton Souza. This was a progressive group where the artists tried to go away from the old Indian tradition of painting, mainly influenced by the Bengal School of Painting.
Husain was an expressionists and his favourite subjects were women and horses. He tried depicting many other subjects painted with his outspoken brushstrokes and speaking colours.
M F. Husain was nominated in Upper house of Parliament in India, too, where he served for one term of six years. The government of India has awarded him as one of the outstanding artist by giving him the prestigious award known as Padma Shree. Undoubtedly, MF Husain was India's best known contemporary painter. He died in London on June 9, 2011. ON his death the art lovers of the world in general and the Indian people in particular should grieve for two reasons. It was so because even at the age of 95, he was very much active. Had lots of painting left in him, even many of them are incomplete. Secondly such a great painter had died in exile. He was always unhappy with the way he was treated. [By Ayaz360 at en.wikipedia (Transferred from en.wikipedia by SreeBot) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons ]

Did M.F. Husain get a raw deal?

SOUTHASIA CRICKET ARTISTNewspaper reports say Maqbool Fida Husain has accepted the citizenship of Qatar.
This means that the legendary Indian painter and (sometime film director) has by default given up his Indian citizenship at the age of 94.
The decision comes after Husain’s “voluntary exile” since 2006 over court cases lodged against him for painting Hindu deities in the nude.
Many people have spoken out in his support all these years but the support was apparently not enough to keep him from in effect renouncing his citizenship.
So who is responsible for things turning out this way?
Is it the government?
For not doing enough to make him feel secure and alleviating what some saw as needless harassment of a senior artist.
After all, even small time politicians in provincial towns are able to get personal security and carbine-toting guards.
Is it society?
For being intolerant of alternative views or ignorant of its own ancient traditions of iconography.
And for letting chauvinists get the upper hand.
Is it Husain himself for what some say is lack of trust in the law of the land and unwillingness to fight it out in the courts.
And for apologising for “having hurt sentiments”, thus surrendering to the mob.
To which his supporters say this is a 94-year-old man one is talking about.
Is it fair to expect one man to fight a society’s battles?
Or is it us?
For being intolerant of alternative views and narrow interpretation of textual traditions.
And for letting chauvinists get the upper hand.
Or is it the people described as elites who in every society through history have been the main patrons and consumers of art?
Have they exerted themselves enough in this case and numerous others?
Be it the “My Name is Khan” controversy, that over Taslima Nasrin or historian James Laine’s work on Shivaji or the cause celebre Salman Rushdie whose book “The Satanic Verses” continues to be banned in India.

Husain’s Mother Teresa


PORTRAITS: Painting the Beautiful Women

Portrait painting, using bright and subdued colours.
The artists of bygone centuries are becoming a substantially forgotten class. However some of them would never be eliminated from our memory. Ingress is one of them. Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres (1780 –1867) was a French Neoclassical painter. His paintings suggest that he had tilted his work towards romanticism movement of painting. For a period he depended on the income received from miscellaneous pencil drawings he did for the tourists. La Grande Odalisque is one of his memorable paintings that he did on commission.
The French artist Jean Auguste Dominique Ingres had acquired his style of painting and drawing from the early stage of his career. He painted the dresses of his models with equal grace as he painted the spotless skin of the women. During the passage of his artistic journey, his style of functioning rarely changed. He had from the beginning of his art career proved her artistic prowess in executing the suavity of outline and extraordinary control of the parallel that would help modeling the forms. Ingres believed that the drawing is the probity of the art, the honesty of the art depicted. So he applied his beliefs in his paintings, too. Thus his paintings reflected the presence of proper drawing and also witness the firmness of the outline underneath the art-piece.

In this portrait Ingress had displayed most of the characteristics his paintings were known to be possessing. After Ingres completed many illustrious portraits of the people of royal families and other people, he got the commission for painting this portrait of an extraordinary beautiful lady. The lady was twenty-eight-year-old princesse de Broglie (1825–1860). It was given to the artist’s understanding that the princess was shy in postures and deeply religious.

In this portrait the lady is unquestionably beautiful beyond description. But the artist has poured his painting skills and intuitions in making the portrait so beautiful. Apart from natural beauty of the model princess—the lady sitting for portrait—the use of blue colour catches the viewers’ eyes. Bright colours, blue and yellow used as dominant colours, with a subdued and smooth background, narrate how the painter had mastered his skill for creating a chiaroscuro. This has created a sense of volume in the figure.

Portrait of the Princess Albert de Broglie Oil on canvas Size121.2 × 90.7 cm Metropolitan Museum of Art Manhattan, New York, USA


PORTRAIT PAINTINGS : Beauty Moving From Palette to Canvas

Pierre-Auguste Renoir - Girl Braiding Her Hair (Suzanne Valadon)
In his late years of life Renoir had cultivated interest in classic art with the brush of an impressionist. He concentrated on ensuring that how the sunlight affects flesh tones. Renoir was very much affected by the beautiful models who worked for him. Here a lady painter herself had posed as a model for the painting.

Suzanne Valadon was a French painter. Here she had modeled for Renoir's painting Girl Braiding Her Hair
Pierre Auguste Renoir (1841 – 1919) was a master in the impressionist style thatcelebrated beauty from whatever elements he might come across. He had painted several beautiful portraits adoring the charm of the models sitting before him. His paintings and portraits are notable for their vibrant light and saturated colour, focusing on people in candid composition, and fusing the details of a scene through freely brushed touches of colour.

Many artists have painted their own faces, self-portraits. The self-portrait is one of the favourite subects, and to an extent fundamental to the history of Western art. From the time of master painter Jan Van Eyck, and through the exotic explorations of Rembrandt, or the self-depictions of Edvard Munch to the giant pixellated compositions of Chuck Close, the subject of portrait painting has varied; enormously enriching itself in respect of purpose and style. Here the master artist had painted his self portrait. (Images courtesy By Pierre-Auguste Renoir (1841–1919) Description French painter Date of birth/death 25 February 1841(1841-02-25) 3 December 1919(1919-12-03) Location of birth/death Limoges Cagnes-sur-Mer Work location Paris (painting by Renoir) [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons)
PENCIL DRAWING: Jane Morris, Pre-Raphaelite Muse

Learn Drawing Portraits of beautiful women, Pencil drawings of women, Drawings of women with a flower.
The Roseleaf -- portrait of Jane Morris by Rossetti
Dante Gabriel Rossetti is the artist who had drawn this pencil drawing. He was an English poet and a painter of nineteenth century.
The lady who had sat as a model for many of Rossetti’s paintings is Jane Morris. In pre- Raphaelite movement the painters chose their near relatives as models for their painters, especially the female models. The female models were generally sisters, lovers or wives of the painters or their friends’. Jane Morris was believed to be Rossetti’s lover and she had married his close friend William Morris. This portrait drawing and such many drawings are done before the painters took brushes and pallets in hands. Here Rossetti has shown the play of emotion as the strong force for the aesthetic experience.
A preparatory pencil drawing is a must for proceeding to a portrait, either in water colour or oil. The above drawing is the example of the preparatory drawing by the master portrait painter Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Here the artist had, before proceeding to canvass, done the drawing in and black pencil. Rossettiis the artist who had drawn above pencil drawing.Rossetti’s was famous for his poetry, too.
Jane Morris was Muse for the group of artists which were known as Pre-Raphaelite group in London. Jane Burden (Morris) was an artist herself. She painted, too. But her fame came from her being model for the great painters of the group. William Morris, a well-known artist of the time had married with her. She was his muse. But she was the Muse to her husband’s close friend, a great artist, Gabriel Rossetti.
Jane Morris (The Blue Silk Dress)
From the Letters written by Rossetti to Jane Morris, it is known that Jane Morris had made the blue dress herself. And she was deeply and artistically, too, involved in the choice of the dress and the pose itself. The unbelievable fame received by this painting had led the duo ofRossetti and Jane Morris to think about a wide series of subject pictures that followed this one. Rossetti was known for his imaginative and realistic paintings; he was equally known for his intimate relationships with the women he loved and worked with. The talks of close relationship between Jane and Rossetti had always clouded the artistic sky of London.
Rossetti painted several paintings, keeping Jane as model. His most famous painting is titled as ‘Proserpina’ or ‘Proserpine,’, a Goddess of Fertility. Here in this painting, titled as ‘Jane Morris' (The Blue Silk Dress), Jane had modelled for Rossetti. [Image Courtesy Dante Gabriel Rossetti [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons Wikimedia Commons , Dante Gabriel Rossetti [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons]


PORTRAIT IN WATER COLOUR : While painting a portrait of a person, the artist must learn the structure of the face first.
John Smart: Watercolour on Ivory Portrait Miniature (1782)
While painting a portrait of a person, the artist must learn the structure of the face first. Then comes the idea about the structure and defining of the anatomy. There after the painter can use his or her knowledge starting with the simple drawings of the form to the finalization of the portrait.Here the preparatory pencil drawings would help artist to make the painting a mistake proof and well-proportioned one. However the complicated the face and the figure to be painted may be, the artist should take time to learn the exact anatomy.
A well-painted portrait would show the inner qualities of the person whose portrait is done, as the aim of the artists cannot be limited to painting the contours of the face and other limbs of the subject or the model. (Image Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
While doing the portrait, the adept handling of watercolours is quite essential, too, as there are very few chances of correcting any mistake done while painting. These colours also need special care on the part of the artists and the owner of the paintings.
TIPs FOR PORTRAIT ARTISTS: Allow your model for a rest after one hour. The constant sitting would make him or her bored and the expressions on face would change considerably.

When an artist decides to make portrait in pencil or watercolours, the prime factor he would think about how the light would fall on the face and other visible part of the person being portrayed. The light, the sunlight, can be bolstering or pale; the light can be intense or diffuse; it would affect the outcome of the final picture accordingly. The watercolorist sets his or her palette and watercolours following the pattern of the light.
Portrait painting in watercolour is an art supported by intuition. It is the art an artist should cultivate. It is also a technique that can be learnt. Portrait painting in water colours can be very challenging assignment. It is complicated, as the water colouring would not allow artist to rectify any error.
Be Ready in Advance
Before starting a watercolour portrait, one should consider several factors. It should be decided in advance which colours are to be used. The tonal values of colours also should be thought about. In case of oil colours, you have an option of repainting on a layer that you want to hide. In watercolours such facilities are not available.
In addition to this there are other aspects like technique for painting hair and giving the effect of lighting are major factors to keep in mind. Here are some and useful tips to help you paint a portrait.
How to Start
Generally the painter starts his or her work of portraying from eyes of the person to be portrayed. Painting the eyes is the factor that can make or break the whole portrait, as the eyes should resemble near to perfection with the real appearance. While painting both of the eyes, an artist tries to get the relationship between all the features accurate. It would be better to start with colouring the corners of eyes, keeping in mind the distance to the bridge of nose from the eyes. It is like letting the eyes and nose having a live dialog.
Know the Facial Features Well
Keen attention on the face is a necessary aspect in portraying. Artist can take help of photographs. But the person to be portrayed should give several personal sittings. It would make the artist familiar with the facial features of the person being portrayed. In case of water colour, this task would become tricky, as the artist have to complete the portrait within a given time.
TIPs FOR PORTRAIT ARTISTS: Avoid placing the head too high or too low on canvas, as it would make the person taller or smaller in height. Keep the sides lighter, giving full highlight to the portrait.
Moreover artist should avoid concentrating exclusively on one factor for long. While drawing with pencil or painting with your brush, you should constantly moving between the various features you can see on the face. Paint the hair in visible mass. It can be dark or light coloured. While painting hair, do remember adding details for a few strands but not the entirety of the hair. The paint texture can be added by glazing, as this is possible when you are doing it in watercolour. The glazing of a transparent colour would add liveliness to the portrait. (Image Courtesy Photobucket)

Mughal Miniature Paintings

The art and the subjects narrated in art are always like a mirror. It reflects the contemporary society; and so did the art of painting known as Mughal Miniatures, that was a style of painting developed in sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. Descended from the art of Persia and Turkey, these miniature paintings and the artists were supported by Mughal Emperors the Rajput Kings.

Abul Fazl Presenting Akbarnama

In many ways, the subjects and objects painted in these paintings are narrative. They show how the people of India lived in those days. On a close look, we can see the style of living and the types of costumes and ornaments these people were wearing in the medieval or post-medieval era. For those who want to know more about the living of Indian Princes, Kings, and Emperors of those days, here are some articles which narrate the different aspects of these Miniature paintings.

Miniature Paintings Depicting Costumes of Medieval Indian society : Main aspect that catches our eyes is the colourful and costly costumes the people have put on. The costumes shown in these paintings represent the lifestyle prevalent in the period of Mughal Emperors and Rajput kings. Especially the female figures painted in Mughal Miniatures depict the characteristics of Indian tradition of the time.

Miniature Paintings Depicting the Beauty and Elegance of Indian WomenThe miniature artists of Mughal era focused their attention on the beauty. They were much attentive to the intricacies of the designs of jewels and drapes, sometimes forgetting the factor of realism that they considered less important.Here in the above miniature the serene beauty of the Mughal characters, especially the sensuality of the lady are the prime, attractive aspects.

Miniatures Painting History of IndiaThe miniature paintings were done by Indian artists since many centuries; we can see some paintings done in sixth and seventh century, too. But the art of miniature painting reached its golden period during the reign of Mughal Emperors. Baburnama, Akbarnama, and Jahangirnama were the books narrating the heroic deeds of the emperors. Mughal Miniature Paintings are the pictorial history of India’s Medieval. The style of painting known as Mughal Miniature was practiced in India from 16th to 19th century. When Emperor Akbar was ruling in Indian subcontinent, this art gained its prominence.

Paintings Depicting Medieval Indian Culture and Lifestyle : The miniature paintings depicted the life and lifestyle of the Mughal and Rajput Kings of the time. The miniatures were painted to narrate how the princes lived, what they wear and how they fought the wars. However the major portions of the artists’ endeavours were devoted in showing the ways and manners in which these medieval kings and princes enjoyed their life.

Akbarnama, The Book of Secular Art This was the era when art lover Emperor and kings of other states in Rajasthan augmented the pace of development of the art of painting.

Akbarnama, The Art of CourtMughal Emperor Akbar (1556-1605) was known for his liberal views about following one’s religion. He regularly held religious holds religious assemblies with the heads of different religions.

Baburnama, An Autobiography of an EmperorIn many of the Mughal Miniature Paintings, painted in the time of Emperor Babur and afterwards, the artists have taken the love scenes and the scenes of bravery of Mughal princes as their subjects. Here the Emperor Babur is shown as hunting. [Image courtesy By Евгений Ардаев at ru.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons Wikimedia ]Husain’s ‘Sprinkling Horses’, a dynamic depiction of horses along side a human figure, has fetched a whopping USD 1.14 million at an auction in Christie’s here, where another 12 of his masterpieces were snapped up.
The high price for the ‘Sprinkling Horses‘, an oil on canvas signed ‘Husain’ in Hindi and Urdu, is a sign that his work continues to be a hot favourite among art connoisseurs across the world, The painting, one of the hallmarks of Husain’s work, was among the 13 paintings that went under the hammer at Christie’s auction of South Asian modern and contemporary art.

Hussain Artist, Art
Huaain’s Speinkling Horses
The 13 paintings were sold for a total of 4.2 million dollars, a clear sign that paintings by the late artist continue to be a collector’s item and will command high prices.
Husain’s other painting ‘Yatra’, a representation of rural India, was sold for 932,5000 dollars, while ‘The ThreeGraces‘ depicting two women and horses fetched 482,500 dollars. An untitled painting, that portraits three heads, was sold for 31,250 dollars, fetching the lowest price among the 13 paintings.
More Husain art will be on sale at Sotheby’s, which will present Modern and Contemporary South Asian Art including Indian miniature paintings as part of its week of Asian art auctions on Thursday.
Husain, a legendary artist who often landed in controversy because of his paintings, passed away in June this year at the age of 95. He was among the first and few artists from India to be in the ‘one million dollar club’, with his work often selling for such a high amount.
His ‘Empty Bowl at the Last Supper’ was sold for USD two million in 2005, which was at that time the highest sum ever paid for a work of modern Indian art.
In early 2008, Hussain’s ‘Battle of Ganga and Jamuna: Mahabharata’, a large diptych from the Hindu epic,  fetched USD 1.6 million, setting a world record at Christie’s South Asian Modern and Contemporary Art sale.

Hussain's sprinkling horses
Hussain’s painter, Sprinkling Horses