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There are probably two desires that haunts every artist at one point of time. The first of this is the wish to find an original style of expression as it is only an original style which can distinguish a genius from an average artist. Though no artist can claim to be absolutely original, yet there are a few artists in India who have made a place in the field of art by their distinct signature styles. One can never fail to recognize for example a Jamini Roy or a Hemen Majumdar of the yesteryear or a Raza, Hussain, Satish Gujral, or  Bikash Bhattacharya of our times. And now among the artists of Bengal, we have people like  Paresh Maiti and Devajyoti Ray , who have succeeded in developing their unique styles of art beyond the confines of mediocrity.  Not only are the styles of these young artists quite distinctive, they are often quite difficult also to imitate.

The second desire that haunts an artist apart from the desire to innovate an original style of art is the wish to strike upon a motif which can distinguish ones art from the rest. Though finding a motif is not as difficult as finding a style, yet motifs have often acted so well as catalysts of artistic expression, that they have become style-statements for many important artists. Below are some of the commonly used motifs in the works of important artists of Bengal and outside. 

M F Hussain   Horses
Tyeb Mehta   Bull
Sunil Das   Horses, Bulls
Ganesh Pyne   Skeleton
S H Raza   Geometric shapes
Paritosh Sen   Own face
Thota Vaikunthan   A plump face of a woman
Bikash Bhattacharya   Third eye on forehead
Shuvaprasanna   Crows
Sanjay Bhattacharya   Doors and windows
Shakti Barman   Birds and beasts
Anjolie Ela Menon   Chair, cot,










        Sunil Das, probably Indiaís most important post-modern expressionist was born in the year 1939. He joined the Government College of Arts and Crafts , Calcutta in 1955, then won a  French Government Scholarship to study at the Ecole National des Beaux Arts in Paris. Later he joined Government service for the Ministry of textiles and since then continued art and official work simultaneously holding important positions like  Member of Purchase Committee for National Art Exhibition of 1979, and Miniature Format Exhibition 0f 1980, Jury for Hyderabad State Akademi, Committee member of 5th Triennale India in 1982 as also member of the General Council of the  Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi



        Sunil Das had also been a prolific organiser and like Ganesh Paine and Bikash Bhattacharya had been a member of the Society of Contemporary Artists , Kolkata, member de la Societe des Muses Nationale d' Art Moderne, Paris, etc.   

        Sunil Dasís style of work is very original and shows no specific influence. He had risen to fame like MF Hussain with his paintings of horses. Like Hussain, Sunil Das was inspired by the force and the strength of the moving horse. Later after his visit to Spain, Das was caught up with the other animal: the bull. The horses and the bull have appeared more than 7000 times in Dasís works. He has otherwise painted haunting pictures of women thereby revealing the dark side of people who are otherwise considered beautiful.


 by Sunil Das

A woman in her failings (oil on canvas) and horses in motion (charcoal) : two of Sunil Das's regular styles

 drawing of Sunil Das


Medium and Technique of paintings 

        Das is effective in most media, though his major works are serigrapghy, conte, and oil on canvas . His style involves the quick use of the brush and pen to get a dynamic effect potent with power. Das does not show much influence of any other artist. His style is very original.

Major Themes 

        Horses and Bulls running, in motion are the major themes in Dasís works. The other recurring theme is the woman with a dark face, haunted and haunting to the viewer. Das has also experimented with his self potratits in colourful strokes .






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