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Jyoti Bhatt (Profile)

Jyoti Bhatt (b. 1934, Gujarat, India)



About his work

“A painter-printmaker, photographer and committed pedagogue, Jyoti Bhatt’s interest in the folk arts and popular culture has had both anthropological and aesthetic values. His perception of tradition involves a comprehension of it in its historical sense in a contextual relationship with the past as well as the present. His compelling artistic oeuvre is one of ‘re-visioning’, the act of looking back, of seeing with fresh eyes, of entering an old text/image from a new critical direction. The plurality and eclectic spirit as evidenced in his work is effectual across two levels – the Indian/regional/ local triad, as well as the autonomy of creative practice. Bhatt’s prodigious canvas encapsulates the mediums of painting, print-making and photography, the imagery of each filtering into the other, fluid in content and style, in a marriage of mediums that challenge the constructed hierarchies in art…”

Extracted from Singh, Amrita Gupta. 2007. “Tradition and Innovation: The Past as Resource”. In Jyoti Bhatt: Parallels That Meet, edited by Roobina Karode, 24-49. New Delhi: Delhi Art Gallery.



  • Studied at Faculty of Fine Arts, M.S. University of Baroda till the completion of Post-Graduate Diploma in Painting under Professors N.S. Bendre, K.G. Subramanyan, and Sankho Chaudhuri; 1950-56
  • Studied Mural and Fresco painting at Banasthali Vidyapith, Rajasthan; 1953
  • Studied painting and etching at Academia Di Belle Arti, at Naples, Italy, under the Italian Government Scholarship; 1959-1962
  • Studied printmaking at Pratt Institute and Pratt Graphic Art Center, New York, U.S.A. under Fulbright scholarship and J.D.R. III Grant; 1964-66


Solo Exhibitions (Selected & Recent)

  • The Indian Portrait XI; Photographs of Contemporaries; Amdavad Ni Gufa; 2020
  • Print show at Bihar Museum, Patna; 2019
  • RE- INCARNATIONS; ARK Gallery, Baroda; 2018
  • The Photographic Eye of Jyoti Bhatt; Guild Art Gallery, Mumbai & Galerie88-Kolkata; 2017
  • Bharat Bhavan, Bhopal; 2013
  • Photographs from Rural India; Tasveer Arts; 2013-2019
  • Retrospective; Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi; 2007
  • Printed Image: retrospective exhibitions of Graphic Prints at Cymroza Art Gallery, Mumbai (1998), ABS Gallery, Baroda (2002), and Anant Art, New Delhi, 2007


Selected Group Exhibitions

  • Serendipity Arts Festival, Goa; Curated by Nancy Adjania; 2019
  • In Conversation; Gallery Espace, New Delhi; 2001
  • Jhaveri Contemporary, Mumbai; 2017
  • Major Trends in Indian Art; Lalit Kala Akademi; 1998
  • Sao Paolo Triennial of Arts; 1969
  • International Biennial for Young Artists; Paris; 1959, 1961
  • Various Festival of India exhibitions held in the UK, U.S.A., U.S.S.R, Poland, Italy, Germany, Sweden, Cuba, Yugoslavia, Canada, Singapore, Taiwan, and Japan, 1954 onwards
  • Participated in National Exhibitions of Arts, Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi; 1954 onwards


Other Achievements

  • Commissioned to do two murals for the Parliament House, New Delhi; 1950-56
  • Founder member and secretary of Baroda Group of Artists, 1956 – 1966 and Founder member of ‘Group 1890’
  • Taught at the Department of Painting, Faculty of Fine Arts, M.S. University, Baroda; 1960s-1992
  • Photographic documentation of the Living Traditions of Folk and Tribal Visual Arts in India
  • Participated in various artists’ camps and workshops on printmaking, photography and painting, including the Smithsonian & U.S.I.S. Print workshop held at New Delhi.
  • Conducted several workshops on printmaking and photography
  • Did photo-documentation of works of Nandalal Bose, Benode Bihari Mukherjee and Ram Kinker Baij; 1980s
  • Recipient of several national and international awards, including National Award at the Annual Art Exhibitions of Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi, 1963; Padmashri from Government of India, 2019; Kalidas Samman, Madhya Pradesh Government, 2017; Top prize, FOTOKINA World Photography Contest, Germany, 1978; Grand Prix, 13th Annual Photo contest for Asia and Pacific, UNESCO, Japan, 1989
  • Doctorate by Rabindra Bharati University, Kolkata, 2004
  • Has worked as a member of the jury committees, advisory committees, executive and selection committee for different organizations related to the Arts and various International, National and State level art exhibitions
  • Has published several books and catalogues including: Parallels That Meet, Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi, 2007; The Photographic Eye of Jyoti Bhatt, Guild Art Gallery, 2019; and The Indian Portrait XI, Archer Art Gallery, 2020



  • Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA
  • Smithsonian Museum, Washington DC, USA
  • Uffizi Gallery, Florence, Italy
  • The British Museum, United Kingdom
  • National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi
  • Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi
  • Featured in several other noted personal, private, institutional and archival collections