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Concise Art History of Jammu & Kashmir (Critical Annotations On Modern Art)

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Item Code: UAE253
Publisher: Kala Evam Dharma Shodh Sansthan
Author: Sunil Khosa
Language: English
Edition: 2013
ISBN: 9789381721087
Pages: 232 (Throughout Colour and B/W Illustrations)
Other Details 11.00 X 9.00 inch
Weight 1.28 kg
Book Description
About The Book

Concise Art History of Jammu and Kashmir - (a critical annotation on modern art) is rendered in two parts. Part I is relatively devoted to the antiquarian study. Artefacts serve pillar posts of information and important traditional bookmarks of cultural evolution. Therefore these visual records of illustrative archaeology come a long way to answer the missing link of times.

Likewise the second part of book deals with the genesis and development of modern art. I consistently worked for more than two decades to record the actual proceedings of the modern art movement.

Personal discussions coupled with the interactions with 2nd and 3rd generation artists like V.R.Khajuria, Gokul Dembi, M.K.Bhat, M.A. Mehboob, Rajinder Tiku and many others, led me to conclude that the establishment of the Modern Art movement in J&K was due to the tireless efforts of Late. Somnath Butt and the two living legends Pt.Triloke Kaul and Shri. P.N. Kachru, who contributed a lot to promote and nurture fine arts in the state.

Artists of the State today, like their contemporaries elsewhere inside and outside the country share a totality of human thoughts, beliefs and accomplishments and their creations are efforts to add new dimensions to our awareness. Their works reflect an intimate perception of things and convey larger messages that are either individualistic or universal in expression.

About the Author

Born in Srinagar (Kashmir) in 1955, Dr. Sunil Khosa is a Ph.D from Banaras Hindu University. He is a teaching faculty and head of the department of Art History and Aesthetics IMFA University of Jammu. He has been a visiting faculty to the University of Fine Arts, Khairagarh (M.P) and Department of Archaeology S.S.University, Varanasi.

Dr. Khosa has many research publications to his credit. His major publications include the books entitled "Art History of Kashmir and Ladakh 1984, "Antiquities of Western Himalayas" 1992 and "Hand Book of Indian Art" A chronicle of Paintings and Sculptures- 1998.


Concise art history of Jammu and Kashmir with a critical annotation on the genesis and development of modern art has been rendered in two parts. The first part of the book is devoted to the ancient art traditions while as second part deals with the progression and practice of modern art.

Art as we understand is a symbolic expression of an era. It is the element of proactive sociological criterion that art becomes an insignia of time and space. As such works of art reflect varied contexts of human life. A walk-through into the realms of art history, we tend to experience that the human being has always readily laid his hands on to any medium that facilitated his creative endeavours.

Artistic strands in a human being made him cavort passionately into the realms of pulsating feel of excitement. Consequently it is due to this process, a spirit of creative quest towards drawing and painting was sparked. Signatures of his creative expression could be dated as early as pre-historic times. As a result, element of creative whiz kid uninterruptedly motivated him to render artistic expressions all through the history.

Scattered antiquities spread across the state of J & K come a long way to answer the missing links of the time. As a consequence, it is due to the intrinsic quality of 'agelessness' in a work of art that human expressions tend to reveal the saga of human advancements corroborating history of thousands of years. Therefore it is in the act of artistic expression that the aesthetic articulation of the composition holds the merit of timelessness.

Looking into the genesis and development of art in the state of Jammu and Kashmir, we confront a situation that restricts our reasoning into a puzzle of stylistic riddle. While tracing the development of artistic expressions, we encounter tricky and intricate influences that lay stacked on the rundles of the cultural mosaic of the region. Also the interpretations commonly drawn from the extracts of socio-political and cultural history confirms that the state of Jammu and Kashmir" had become a cultural conduit and a melting pot of different cultures. Surviving archaeological evidences from the numerous valleys of the state therefore serve as one of the most important attesting evidence of the history. Being intensely strong in feelings these artistic delineations over the ages represent cultural updates. It is due to the element of pro-active sociological merit that art becomes a sign and symbol of times.

A preview of these artistic renditions found on the walls of Hindu-Buddhist monastic establishments or in the form of stray posts of artistic references, these works of art provide an insight into the gambol of cultural complexities.

Historical narratives, coupled with archaeological evidences, prove that the region of Jammu and Kashmir had functioned as a cultural crucible for India on the one hand and Tibet, China and Central Asia on the other hand. Cosmopolitan distinctiveness of the region and Kashmir as its hub stands vetted by the great Chinese historiographers like Hieun Tsang, Ou Kong, Che Mong and many others. The existing archaeological remains bear a rich pluralistic traditionalism of various societies that contributedsignificantly in the cultural development of the region.

In a bid to estimate the developments of cultural history of the Western Himalayas e quite often get into a state of confusing historical gaps. It is due to paucity of records that the surviving antiquities come a long way to answer about the issues. related to the development of social art style in the region. Besides serving as important traditional bookmarks of cultural evolution, these works of art become helpful when these are translated and hypothesised with the corresponding literary corroborations. While doing so, with caution, we ought to understand the usage, practice and perspective of the linguistic transients that are empirical and capable of communicating multiple expressions of each single thought, documented by the historians.

Therefore, it becomes obligatory for us to contemplate and reconstruct visual precepts of the text bearing conformity with the records of the times that we are dealing with. Due to the aspects of multilingual character of the region, documents of history are such that the description of a distinctive concept could fit in for more than one style of art. The subtle difference of one style with the other so perplexing that we can ill-afford to ignore the incoming movements of various ethnic groups into this region. Inroads made by the foreign settlers have also contributed a great deal into the development of art. Adaptation and modification of these influences over a period of centuries must have evolved a distinct style. In fact, it is due to their presence that one can corroborate intra regional cultural interactions of these societies that visual records of illustrative archaeology comes a long way to answer the missing link of times.

For the last 100 years, the state of Jammu and Kashmir has been exposed to many influences that brought changes in the socio-political and cultural setup of the state. History stands a witness to the events of consequential nature and one such momentous happening in the field of art history is the establishment of Modern Art. In order to know about the genesis and development of the art I had to dedicate more than two decades to understand variety of derivations and influences that got associated with the artists of the state who in due course of time joined the pool of global community of creative artists.

While attempting to identify the development of modern art, a process of interaction and discussion with the 2nd and 3rdgeneration artists like V.R.Khajuria (Jammu), Gokul Dembi, M.K.Bhat (Kashmir), M.A.Mahboob, Rajinder Tiku and many others steered me to conclude that the 'phenomenon' of modern art movement in J&K was due to the tireless efforts of late Somnath Butt, G.R.Santosh and two of their living associates like Pandit Triloke Kaul and Shri P.N.Kachru that the academic discipline of modern art was born in this state. These die hard artists in the course of time befriended young politicians who subsequently occupied high government positions. These politicians proved a short in the arm of the artists as these political elites offered great support for modern art in the state. As a result, government reflected a need to establish a nodal organisation to cater to the aspirations of artists, writers and poet's. The eminent state politicians and art lovers supported the issue and the government of Jammu & Kashmir by proviso to section 146 of the constitution of Jammu & Kashmir, established the Academy of Art, Culture & Languages in 1958. It was declared to be an autonomous corporate body vide. SRO NO- 340 Dated 14th August, 1963 and was to look after the renaissance, development and preservation of rich cultural heritage embedded in all the three regions of the state. Academy of Art, Culture & Languages was established on the pattern of Lalit Kala Akademi, Sahitya Akademi and Sangeet Natak Akademi at the national level in the country.

To revive the age old handicraft industry of Jammu and Kashmir, a proactive policy was adopted by the Government. In order to give an innovative flip and boost to the dying handicraft industry a decision to establish School of Design was taken wherein all the eminent creative artists of the times like Triloke Kaul, P.N.Kachru and S.N.Butt were put on official positions in the department.

**Contents and Sample Pages**

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