About the Artist

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P. N. Choyal (born 1924) is certainly a painter fully aware of the complex development of modern art, what with his stint at the Slade in London. If he has evolved his own style, it is not in deliberate isolation, that is, from either the Eastern or Western traditions. Even so, he has his deepest roots in his native Rajasthan tradition – the tradition in which we have untold styles of miniature painting. He is an artist who has perhaps begun with the observation of figure studies and landscape, but the end result is much farther removed from the naturalistic convention. Though he has always an object in nature to inspire him, in the processes of translation that follow, he evolves a composition in which the object is often no longer recognizable. It would not be true to say that the result is abstract, because the forms that remain in the picture are still recognizably organic.

Choyal selects particular aspects in the Rajasthan landscape call it monument scope but having selected his subject it seems to the artist impossible to sit down to a tame imitation of the apparent. The reality is elsewhere, namely, in the painter’s mind. The essence is intellectual and emotional, living as though he were the rich Rajasthan sagas. And so, he seems to express what he feels by paraphrasing what he has observed. His paintings as a whole, therefore, are a transmission of natural as also of the sensational reality of the moment when these facts are first registered on him: everything has to be faithful to be sensational reality. And which is registered on our own consciousness.

In general, the finest of the artist’s work is an interplay of the tone and color sufficiently striking in its own mysterious domain. An attempt to analyze all this would be foolish and delicate. Even so, one can say that the individual colors in his works are nameless, and every large area is not a color but mutation of tone. He introduces subtle variations in these choice compositions. In some works there are moments as if of hot summer days. The desert stillness and the gently vibrating haze in these works gives to our perception a kind of finality, as though we are listening to the hum of minstrel’s one- stringed instrument, recounting the lore of Rajasthan. Arid over here, too, our emotions are sharpened by amazement. 

Choyal has no intension to flatter humans. Rather he rests out of the human frame, or out of any organic form, images of power and movement, and as of the feel of reality behind appearances. The sense of immediacy comes about with much facility. Here it is possible to praise the expressive brush stroke, the special realism, and even at the moments the psychological penetration. The artists exploits his material well, both thematic and technical. But the style that choyal has developed in the course of the time does not overawe us. It only assists at the birth of the given truth. A good bit of spiritual effort is required to effect an exact transformation of the raw life experience into palpable art; and, at select moments, the painter succeeds in his mission splendidly. Mind you, there is no possibility of improvising works of this caliber. The artist really wills them into being. He identifies with what is presented to his own eyes. He takes this matter in and relates to it completely, without exception. He has based in his paintings, of a wide variety from not only memory or observation of particular objects or places, but also whatever comes up from the general fund of his knowledge of natural forms.

Surely the artist has made himself familiar with the locale of his home state completely, by now. Out of the depth of the sureness of this knowledge he creates compositions, which have the vital rhythm of lived life. Also the vitality in certain of his figuration is an effect of moment of muscles, thus a dynamic quality comes to inform these compositions. To create such vitality in an animate mass is a difficult proposition. This demands not only a good plastic sensibility but in addition the capacity to redo this same sensibility into objective material forms. Choyal has achieved a respectable degree of integration in such paintings, and these works may be said to be also multi- nuanced, never merely illustrative.

In sum, in this painter, a veteran, we have authenticity because he has successfully absorbed the styles of the west, and then crossed them with the art forms of the place where he has been born. The cross breeding of this nature can be fruitful, if an artist is true to himself, whether those be history based, romantic or of rural nature. The artist has had a rich life, in terms of experience, and much of this experience has found place on his canvass in the contemporary idiom. But if it is contemporary, it is at the same moment outside time.


Why did choyal paint his women middle-aged and portly, and slightly time worn, instead of the nubile nymphets that are the most usual choice of artists? Observing the veteran over the span of his career, it is notable that his was a penchant for portraying the second stage of things, be it the woman, the monument, or the urban landscape. For anything to be affected by its people and surroundings, it first has to be manifest with a physical form. What follows is how its circumstances alter it. That is how it is with his monuments and that is how with the women he painted.

He has felt her to be faceless and voiceless, only a protruding belly, and a bare midriff, caught in the inevitability of social mores and time, suffering without a qualm, with a conditioning that was generations old. True to his ilk, he never returns to what he has left behind, at least not apparently so, for who can evade the engram? So when he says he does not care to retrace his artistic journey, one believes him, for noticeably, he has never returned to the ethereally idealized planes of Buddhist that he had burnt his midnight oil creating, as a budding young painter. 

Long past romanticizing, Choyal paints not forts but its dilapidated edifice, not the lissome lass but her fatigued adulthood, not resplendent motherhood but the faceless, biological child bearer. The question is, can she vote out through her frame, the one in which she caught, even as it supports her as an inanimate wall piece?
So over the years, P.N. Choyal has, through his derelict monument, nameless men and women, and the tips of his paint brush, consistently emerged as a humanitarian artist, in love with his legacy and proud of his birth. 

Aruna Bhowmick  



1946     Fine Art Diploma (1948) and D.T.T. from School of Arts & Crafts, Jaipur.
1953     Government Diploma (Painting) – Sir J.J. School of Arts, Mumbai, 
1961-62     Attended Slade College of Arts, University College, London, 
1955     M.A. Hindi (Lit.) 
1970 & 1971     Attended All India Art Teachers Sequential Camp, Mumbai.
1967    Attended Fresco and Mural Camp, Banasthali Vidyapeeth.
Attended innumerable seminars and workshops at various Universities


•    Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy - 1960, 1961,1963,1964,1965 and 1968.
•    Indian Academy of Fine Arts, Amritsar-1978-79.
•    All India Fine Arts & Crafts Society, New Delhi-1983, 1986 & 1990.
•    National Award by Lalit Kala Academy, New Delhi-1988.
•    Awarded as “Kala Ratna”, New Delhi – 2007.


•    Elected the ‘FELLOW’ by Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy.
•    Veteran Artist’s honor by A.I.F.A.C.S. New Delhi - 1984.
•    ‘Kala Ratna’ award – 2007 by Lalit Kala Academy, New Delhi.

One Man & Group Exhibitions

Kota, Udaipur, Jaipur, Alwar, Delhi, Mumbai, Madras, Chandigarh, Bangalore and Calcutta, Japan, Moscow, Brazil, Algeria etc.

Participated in all major Art Exhibitions held in India which include All India Fine Arts & Crafts Society, New Delhi; Academy of Fine Arts, Amritsar; Oriental Society and Birla Academy of Art and Culture, Calcutta; U.P. Academy; Bombay Art Society; Drawing exhibitions organized by Govt. Museums and Art Gallery, Chandigarh; Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy and Central Lalit Kala Academy New Delhi.

2001    Solow show by P.N. Choyal at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2004    Solo Show by P.N. Choyal at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2006    ‘Passion N Compassion’ Group Show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2007    Range-I’ Group Show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2008    ‘The Black Moon’ by P. N. Choyal at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur 
2008     Group Show at Gallery Artchill, Amer fort, Jaipur.
2013    Confluence des Arts’ Group Show at Gallery Artchill, Amer Fort, Jaipur.
2015    Oh Krishna’ Group Show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2015    'THE REVEALED MYSTERIES’ Group Show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur. 
2015    ‘Art Walk’ Group Show by Artchill at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2017    Golden Jubilee Show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2018     ‘Art Idioms’ Group show at Juneja Art Gallery, Jaipur.
2019      ‘Inner voices - outer masks’ show by Group Show at Gallery Artchill, Jaipur.

Art Camps

1986    SARC Festival.
1986    Painters’ camp at Mandav, M.P.
1986    Painters’ camp Karnataka Academy
1995    Aaj, Udaipur  
1996    ABC Art Gallery, Varanasi, Jawahar Kala Kendra’s, Painters’ camp held at WZCC, Udaipur &  Art camp at Agra, 
1970 – 1990    Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy and Lalit Kala Academy, New Delhi.
1996 – 1998    All India artists’ camp of fellows of Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy.
1998    Veteran Artists’ camp – Rajasthan Lalit Kala Academy & West Zone Culture Centre.
1998    50 years Celebration camp - West Zone Culture Centre & North Zone Culture Centre.
2003    Artist camp at Hyderabad, organized by WWF 
2003    Artist camp at Kurukshetra University.
2003    Artist camp at Bhuvaneshwar, organized by Reflection of another Day.
2004    Artist camp at Bikaner sponsored by AIFACS, New Delhi.
2004    Artist Camp at Amritsar .
2005    All India camp at Jaipur  organized by Juneja Art Gallery 
2007    Art camp- and seminar, Dayal Bagh University, Agra.
2007    Art Camp – HRC Management Institute, Jaipur.
National Artists camp at  Le Meridien Jaipur, organized by Gallery Artchill


1986    Moscow-Veteran Artists of India.
1986    VI Triennale.
1987    Sao-Paulo-International Biennale.
1989    Havana-International Biennale. (Deputed Commissioner for Indian Section),
1992    Bharat Bhavan Biennale.
1992    Birla Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta, Silver Jubilee Exhibition.
1992    Global Forum, Shimane Artists Conference, Japan.
1992    One man Show at KYOTO (Japan) organized by Shimin Gaiko Association.
1993    Cultural Dept. Japan & Shimin Giako Assoc. Joint Exhibition at Kobe (JAPAN).

Distinct Invitations

1989     One man show at Sarla Art Centre, Chennai.
1989     ‘Nature and Environment’ (Nehru birth Centenary organized by Lalit Kala Academy, New Delhi).
1990     ‘Art for CRY’
1990     ‘Veteran Artists of India’ – (Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi).
1991     ‘Images of Joy & Despair’ (A group of Indian Artists Exhibition at Singapore).
1992     ‘Downtrodden and We’ (sponsored by Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi)
1992     A group of Indian Artists exhibition at Malaysia.
1992-93     ‘AMERICA’- an international exhibition at Brazil.
1992     Global Forum for Artists Conference & Shimin Giako Association for one-man show, Japan.
1993     Artists Exhibition at Malaysia (Kualalumpur)
1993     International Art BIENNAL in BRASQUE, SANTA CATARNA – BRAZIL. 
1993     “REFUGEE” an international Exhibition at ROSRANT, GERMANY.
1993     “Shraddha Samarpan” exhibition, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai.
1994     Global Organization at Hotel Green Elizabeth, Montreal, Canada. 
1997     An art exposition in aid of Karnataka Police Benevolent Fund.
1998     An exhibition organised by Spastic society of Karnataka.
1999     The Enduring Lines, homage to Mahender Jain, Dhoomimal Art center 
1999     Indian Art and Cinema, Arushi Art Gallery
2000     Indian Art and Cinema, Arushi Art Gallery 
2000     ‘IGNITION’, an exhibition by forty artist Crimson, the art resource, Mumbai
2000     ‘The Millennium Mask’, Dhoomimal Art center, New Delhi – 
2001     ‘NAWA VITAL LINK 2000’ Kyoto, Japan (a collaborative Installation program) 
2002     II Asian art Exhibition, AIFACS, New Delhi.
2002     Half a Square Foot Dhoomimal Art center, New Delhi 
2003     ‘Kite – A Celebration of Freedom’, Dhoomimal Art center, New Delhi
2003, 04, 06     ‘Harmony Art Trust’ Bombay
2003     Retrospective Exhibition sponsored by Dhoomimal Art Center 
2003     Retrospective Exhibition sponsored by Dhoomimal Art Center 
2003     Platinum Celebration of AIFACS – an art Exhibition at Amritsar 
2004     IGNITION, An exhibition by 40 artists, “Crimson – the art resource”, Mumbai.
2005     ‘Regional sr. Artists camp’ at Lakhnow by Lalit Kala Akademi
2005    Solo shows – Lille (France) 
2006,07    Solo Show April – May – Paris, sponsored by gallery ‘Le POINT du JOUR’
2008- March,     Solo show- The Black Moon, at Gallery Artchill, Amer fort, Jaipur 


National Gallery of Modern Art, Lalit Kala Akademi, Rajasthan Lalit Kala Akademi, Modern Art Gallery, Chandigarh Museum, Govt. Museum Jaipur, Maharani Gayatri Devi, Governer’s house Jaipur, Maharao Bhim Singh Kota, H.H. Jawahar, Kamani Bros., Bajaj Enterprises, Taj group, Larson and Turbo, Union Carbide, Steel Authority of India, Air India, CRY, Jawahar Kala Kendra - Jaipur and Several other private collections in India and abroad. YAMASO BIJITSU Art Gallery, Kyoto, Japan.