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Chintamoni Kar: A sculptor and a nature lover who has a bird sanctuary to his name

Renowned Indian sculptor, Chintamoni Kar was born on this day, 19 April, 1915. Born and brought up in Kharagpur, West Bengal, he was trained at the Indian Society of Oriental Art run by Abanindranath Tagore and learnt the art of sculpting from Giridhari Mahapatra and Victor Giovanelli. Later he moved to Paris in 1938 to study at Academie de la Grande Chaumiere. He made use of various materials for sculpting such as wood, metal, terracotta and stone. Initially he was trained as an academic and representational style but had also produced various works related to nature.


On his return to India, Kar taught at the University of Calcutta and the Delhi Polytechnic, in 1946 he became a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors in London. At the Summer Olympics 1948 in London, he won the silver medal for his work entitled ‘The Stag’. In 1956 he was then elected as the Principal of the Government College of Art and Craft in West Bengal.


He held a large number of exhibitions in India as well as in various different countries. He was honoured with Padma Bhushan from the Government of India in 1974 and with France’s highest civilian honour in 2000. Chintamoni Kar Bird Sanctuary is named after him for his efforts to give the region the status of a wildlife sanctuary.

Kar died on 3 October, 2005 and just before his death he instituted the Bhaskar Administration and Maintenance Trust at his residential campus in Kolkata which went on to become a public museum on 19 April, 2006.