Jogen Chowdhury (b.1939) has been widely acknowledged as a master of the unbroken line. Like Léger, Chowdhury has been stirred by the linear Kalighat pat tradition, but his lines are emotive and used to express and suggest the character of a person. This is done by, distorting the form without breaking the line and in the world of young, contemporary art, distortion has been Jogen Chowdhury’s most significant impact. The power and beauty of his technique and line is this play between the known and unknown. In Jogen Chowdhury’s work, the figure is always in the foreground, it is primary, it conveys everything. He uses colour to give volume to his figures and the fluidity of his lines bring a sensual aspect to his forms.
Chowdhury is fascinated by history. Having experienced the traumatic effects of the Partition, dislocation and a sense of isolation, his figures reflect an intractable solitude. Chowdhury’s works are also social and political comments, he either protests or sublimates the injuries to or of the human condition. Jogen Chowdhury’s ability to juxtapose contrary emotions, the real and imaginary and the known and unknown, make his art not only a form of self-expression but a reflection, of a collective and subjective consciousness.