Engaging with the Progressives!

On Wednesday, I had taken around 10 of my middle school kids to a show at the newly opened Delhi Art Gallery in Kala Ghoda, Mumbai. Four floors of the most exquisite paintings by the artists of the Bombay Progressive Group ( A group of Indian artists who came together after India gained independence in 1947. The group was the most influential group of modern artists in India from its formation. The artists combined Indian subject matter with post-impressionist colours, Cubist forms and brusque, Expressionist styles.) The artists in the group include F. N. Souza, M. F. Husain, Gaitonde, Krishen Khanna, Raza, Bakre, Ara, and Tyeb Mehta among others.

The children had a great interactive session and after a brief introduction to the art and the artists, were encouraged to engage with the works and respond to them. They picked their favorite among the paintings displayed and talk about their preferences. The group discussed the works in terms of line, color, shapes, texture and how these worked together in the artwork. Tehzeeb from the gallery led them through the works and was amazed at the varied responses and the observations of the kids. When it was time to wrap up the session, we had a tough time to round up the kids and get them out of the taller, so engrossed were they in the works.

A glimpse of the kids at the gallery.


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