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G.M. Butcher

Avinash Chandra had a solo exhibition at Molton Gallery 44 South Molton Street, London, W1, that took place September 7 - October 1 1960. The exhibition consisted of 30 oil on canvas paintings, plus six gouaches.

This 1960 exhibition came with a small catalogue, containing a substantial essay by G.M. Butcher, which concluded, “It is also important to note that of all the great traditions of world art which have made their contribution to Western painting in the past century, only the art of India remains “undiscovered”. Or rather, it is only among several dozen young Indian painters that an attempt is being made to bring into relationship the attitudes of modern painting and the traditions of ancient India. Chandra is among those few.”

Earlier in the text, Butcher asserted that Chandra’s “paintings are neither naturalistic or non-objective, nor are they in any sense an uneasy compromise between the two. Superficially, they are decoratively appealing, just as abstraction and expressionism can be, but they are also much more than this. Part of their particular strength  lies in their not being “international”. This is to say that they have a clear national identity to the degree that Chandra succeeds in transforming a diversity of origins and influences. In an obvious way, this is something that “international” abstraction simply cannot do. Its internationalism is precisely the end result of a constant attrition of diverse influences and origins.”

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Catalogue relating to an exhibition, 1960