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The National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) Mumbai Foundation Day and Shakti (The Silver Jubilee Exhibition)

By : The National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) Mumbai Foundation Day and Shakti (The Silver Jubilee Exhibition)

December 23, 2021

National Gallery of Modern Art
National Gallery of Modern Art

In the year 1949, the idea to develop a national art gallery was proposed for the very first time. On 29 Mar 1954, Dr S Radhakrishanan (Hon'ble Vice-President of India) inaugurated National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) at the Jaipur House, New Delhi. NGMA was inaugurated at Jaipur House, girding India Gate circle, built as a residence for the Maharaja of Jaipur in the year 1936.

Jaipur House was one of the premier edifices, the butterfly-shaped building with a central dome, that was designed by Charles G Blomfield and his brother Francis B Blomfield. NGMA, Mumbai, was opened to the public in the year 1996.

NGMA was established with the objective of promoting modern art in the country. NGMA is a repository of the cultural ethos of the country and showcases the changing art forms through the passage of last hundred and fifty years starting from about 1857 in the field of Visual and Plastic arts. The NGMA collection today is one of the most significant collection of modern and contemporary art in the country today.

NGMA aimed to acquire and preserve works of art from 1850s onwards. Some objects of minor arts came to NGMA gratis from the Government toshakhana (treasury), only because they were made after 1857. These were the regalia made for the 1911 Delhi Durbar and other vice-regal Durbars. The perpetual loan to NGMA by the trustees of Rasaja Foundation of its collection of 1273 works was a significant addition to the gallery a few years back.

The foremost responsibility of the NGMA is to ensure quality and maintain standards of excellence.

For various exhibitions at NGMA, see:

For the variegated Collections, visit:

For Virtual Tour of the Galleries, visit:

Shakti: A Retrospective of Rini Dhumal

India is an old civilization and a young nation. The generation of artists that came of age in the heady years after the country gained independence seemed to know this intuitively. In the work of many of these towering giants, you can see reflections of this duality. They drew on new ideas even while being rooted in indigenous art traditions. Rini Dhumal is one of them. The retrospective exhibition, inaugurated by the respected Director General, NGMA, on the Foundation Day this year will provide a chance to evaluate her unrestrained and distinctive body of work and place her in the galaxy of distinguished artists exhibited by NGMA.

Born in 1948, Rini Dhumal’s formative years were spent absorbing both the rhythms of rural life in her maternal grandparents’ rambling mansion in Itakumari and the pulsating energies of a new nation in Mumbai. As a young student, she came to the Faculty of Fine Arts at Maharaja Sayajirao University in Vadodara in 1966. Her work not only captures but exemplifies the spirit of the times. She forged her own path by making figurative art central to her work, diversifying it and using it to define her own gendered identity.

Rini Dhumal worked across genres. Superbly versatile, her accomplishments as printmaker and painter never stopped her from widely experimenting with ceramics, bronze, terracotta and tapestries. A vital component of her art practice, her understanding of colour was very profound. She was a professor at the Maharaja Sayajirao University at Vadodara for two decades, and most of her students continued to be part of her extended family, known for her extraordinary generosity and impetuousness, she kept herself aloof from the lure of commerce.

*The Silver Jubilee exhibition has been postponed due to the pandemic situation in Mumbai. It shall be inaugurated at the earliest.


Also, from the Notes of Director General, Shri Adwaita Gadanayak.

Special thanks to Ms. Radhika Dhumal (from Dr. Divya Sethi)