Hungarian-born Indian painter Amrita Sher-Gil exhibition opened at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

UNESCO honors the memory of Hungarian-born Indian painter, Amrita Sher-Gil (1913-1941) at the 100th anniversary of her birth with an exhibition at the organization's Paris headquarters.

Amrita Sher-Gil is widely recognized as the artist that rejuvenated Indian painting. Part of the exhibition was put together by art historian Katalin Keserű from the artist's works that were on display in the Hungarian National Museum in June and July. The other part of the exhibition came from the collection of the Delhi National Gallery.

The opening event attended by among others Hungary's ambassador to UNESCO Katalin Bogyay, India's ambassador to UNESCO Viany Sheel Oberoi, India's Secretary of Ministry of Culture Ravindra Singh and Hungary's Assistant Secretary of State for Culture Judit Hammerstein.

In her speech Katalin Bogyay recalled that the General Assembly declared 2013, as an Amrita Sher-Gil-year to honor the artist who is considered as a bridge between European and Asian cultures.

Amrita Sher-Gil was born in 1913 in Hungary from a Hungarian mother and Umrao Singh Sher-Gil Majithia, a Sikh aristocrat and a scholar from Punjabi. She spent most of her early childhood in Budapest. She was the niece of Indologist Ervin Baktay. At the age of 16, the family moved to Paris where she attended art school for 6 years before returning to Hungary. Sher-Gil married her Hungarian first cousin, Dr. Victor Egan in 1938 and moved with him to India to stay at her paternal family's home in Saraya in Gorakhpur, Uttar Pradesh.

Judit Hammerstein drew attention to the centuries-old Hungarian-Indian cultural relations that go back as far as the time of Sándor Kőrösi-Csoma, Erzsébet Brunner Sass or Ervin Baktay.

After the opening the Assistant Secretary of State for Culture, and her Indian counterpart reviewed the current status of Hungarian-Indian cultural relations.

( – wikipedia -


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