Born in 1973, Tanmoy Samanta began his artistic journey at the Kala Bhavan in Santiniketan, West Bengal, followed by training at the Kanoria Arts Centre, Ahmedabad. His career has seen a number of solo exhibitions including three with the New Delhi based Gallery Espace and one at Anant Art Gallery, Kolkata. Samanta’s show at TARQ in 2014, titled ‘The Shadow Trapper’s Almanac’, curated by Ranjit Hoskote, marked his first solo exhibition in Mumbai. The upcoming show, ‘Portraits in Time’, will be his second solo show with TARQ.
Over the years, Samanta has been a part of group shows across India and abroad. Besides finding a presence in numerous art fairs such as Art Dubai, Dhaka Art Summit, Art Chennai and the India Art Fair, his works are a part of several prestigious public art projects such as the installation at the Hyatt Regency, Delhi (2016), a site specific collaborative project at IIM Amedabad (2016), T-2 Liminus, Mumbai International Airport (2013) and Bee-Hive at the Hyatt Regency, Chennai (2011) – both curated by Rajiv Sethi. In 2002, Samanta artistic practice was recognized and celebrated with an award from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, New York, USA.
He lives and works in New Delhi.
22 Nov 2014 - 09 Jan 2015
Curated by Ranjit Hoskote, ‘The Shadow Trapper’s Almanac’, is Tanmoy Samanta’s first solo exhibition in Bombay. It features gouache paintings on rice paper and recycled book sculptures, two integral facets of his practice. Samanta’s practice explores notions traditionally associated with sculpture, including “volume and void, relief and surface, container and content.” According to Hoskote “Tanmoy Samanta’s works, with their combination of exhilaration and menace, formal playfulness and philosophical depth, remind us that art is not an escape from the world, but a route that leads us back, replenished by dream and vision, to the perplexities of the everyday.”
20 Jan 2017 - 25 Feb 2017
Tanmoy Samanta’s second solo exhibition at TARQ carries works created by the artist over the last two years. In keeping with his distinctive aesthetic of clean lines and muted, stone-like colours, Samanta has continued to use a motley collection of found objects – protractors, stencils, pins and a faux fur in his work, which, together with his tempera and mixed media allow a turn towards the uncanny and surreal.
Samanta uses portraiture – a theme steeped in historical tradition – in order to delve into time and its impact on memory and recall. The portraits, which individually define their specific subjects, envelop seemingly inconsequential and banal objects in a much wider context. The objects become “witnesses”; receptacles of memories that travel through the folds of time and space. Samanta imbues the uncanny imagery with symbolism that travels from the universe of the frame to the field of vision of the viewer.
Exhibition Catalogue: Portraits In Time