The Birla Academy of Art & Culture was established in 1967 with the principal objective of fostering the growth of art and culture with emphasis on visual and performing arts. In this time, the Academy has established itself as a center of cultural, artistic and educational activities.
It all started when Sri Basant Kumar Birla & Smt (late) Sarala Birla; foremost industrialists of India, had started collecting rare and valuable treasures of art out of their profound love for art & beauty. With a sizable collection in place, it was decided that such veritable treasure troves of history should be accessible to all. A public Charitable Trust was created in 1962 with a view to collecting, preserving and exhibiting art objects for the public.
For accommodating the proposed institute, the present eleven storied building was completed in 1966 and it was formally inaugurated under the name “Birla Academy of Art & Culture” by Karan Singh in 1967. It is now one of the premier museums and art galleries of the country. It consists of spacious display-halls, necessary for full-fledged cultural centre of modern importance. Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata located at Rabindra Sarobar is one of the finest art galleries in the country. Since its inception in 1966, this art gallery has succeeded in drawing large number of guests from all over the country.
Birla Academy of Art and Culture is beautifully maintained and exhibits various specimens of arts and gives an insight into the cultural heritage of the country. Counted as one of the major museums and art galleries in India, Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata gives lots of importance to the talent and showcases their creativity in this gallery. Indian modern art and paintings are also finds place in this art gallery of Kolkata. In this art gallery, you can find breathtakingly beautiful paintings that date back to the medieval period, textiles, archaeological manuscripts, woodcarvings and ancient Indian sculptures. Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Kolkata has a huge collection of manuscripts and important documents that are from the period between 2nd to the 19th century AD.
From the manuscripts that are treasured in this art gallery and museum, you can get to know about the 1811 Persian translation work of the Mahabharata. You can also find the assortment of the manuscripts of the 19th century Hafiz gazals in the Mughal style and a xerox copy of the Shabnama. At this gallery, you can also find 13th century Jain palm leaf folios. The miniature of the Krishna from the Sikh school is also among the displays. There is an entire section that is dedicated to the theme of Krishna. The colorful figurines from the Kangra School of arts are equally interesting.
The academy fills a large, modern building with classrooms, lecture halls, and galleries housing permanent art collections and traditional arts as well as galleries dedicated to showcasing emerging art trends in well curated exhibits. A huge space divided into many smaller rooms. I am including photos of some of the rooms to give a sense of the museum-like scale.
Last year of 2016, 49th Annual exhibition, we visited two contemporary art exhibitions at the BAAC in Kolkata. The 49th Annual Exhibition and LoC - Line of Control. The exhibition curated by the well know art critics Johnny ML. Loc. The exhibition came up wonderful project and twenty nine Indian artists readily agreed to participate in it.
And now 2017, the golden jubilee, celebrations are also marked by regular annual show featuring the selected works of the young artists from over India. The show highlights the work of 154 artists have been identified for the annual exhibition and 66 eminent artists from all over india who have been working towards enriching the aesthetical climate of the country for over three decades.
All the artists in this show, despite their disparate geographical locations and working conditions have earned a name for themselves in cultural history of India through their paintings, graphic prints, sculptures and various other mediums.
The young artists started off as fresh graduates and have tremendous possibilities to establish themselves in the field of contemporary art.
Written By: Arindam Chakraborty, Artist