Born 1940, Burnpur, West Bengal, India


Throughout her artistic career, Anjolie Ela Menon has re-envisioned her role as an artist and has produced various bodies of work toward her aim to defy categorization. Menon’s early paintings, mainly portraits, imply inspiration from the likes of Modigliani, Van Gogh, Amrita Sher-Gil, and M. F. Husain. She comments on her approach of using flat areas of thick bright color with sharp outlines, which were done "with the vigor and brashness of extreme youth."


Menon’s studies in Paris in the 1960s exposed her to the techniques of medieval Christian iconography, particularly Byzantine art. A period of experimentation led to a muted palette of translucent colors, by her layering thin glazes of oil paint onto hardboard. The finely textured surfaces were further enhanced by burnishing the finished work with a soft dry brush, creating a glow reminiscent of medieval icons. As her style continued to evolve, Menon developed the distinctive features of early Christian art - namely the frontal perspective, the averted head, and the slight body elongation - but took the female nude as a frequent subject. The result is a dynamic relationship of eroticism and melancholy. Menon developed her artistic approach of distance and loss in her later works through her thematic depiction of black crows, empty chairs, windows, and hidden figures.


Menon’s prolific output has resulted in solo and numerous group exhibitions internationally. Her works have been acquired by major museums in India and abroad and reside in both private and corporate collections. She is also well known for her murals and has represented India at the Algiers Biennale and in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Solo exhibitions include the Winston Gallery, Washington, USA; Doma Khudozhinkov, U.S.S.R; Rabindra Bhavanand Shridharani Gallery, New Dehli; Academy of Fine Arts, Calcutta and a major solo exhibition at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco in 2006.


The artist lives and works in New Delhi.




1980-81              Study tour to France, UK and USA (invitation by the Government of France)

1961-62              Atelier Fresque, Ecole des Beaux Arts, Paris, France

Bachelors in Literature, Dehli University, Delhi, India

Sir J.J. School of Art, Bombay


Select Solo Exhibitions


2015                     Recent Works - Anjolie Ela Menon, D-40 Defence Colony Gallery, New Delhi

2013                     Recent Paintings, Grosvenor Vadehra, London

Institute of Contemporary Indian Art (ICIA), Mumbai

2010                     Through the Patina, organized by Vadhera Art Gallery at Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat                 Centre, New Delhi

2008                     Three Generations of Art, Dhoomimal Gallery, New Delhi

2007                      Menongitis - Three Generations of Art, Dhoomimal Gallery, New Delhi

2006                     Six month solo show at the Asian Art Museum, San Francisco, USA

                                Celebration, Aicon Gallery, Palo Alto

2005                      Aicon Gallery, Palo Alto

2004                      Aicon Gallery, New York

2003                      Vadehra Art Gallery at Shridharani Gallery, New Delhi

2002                      Four Decades, Vadehra Art Gallery at National Art of Modern Art (NGMA), Mumbai, Karnataka Chitrakala Parishad, Bangalore

2000                      Gods and Others, Apparao Galleries at Admit One Gallery, New York

1998                     Retrospective organized by the Times of India, Jehangir Art Gallery

1996                      Exhibition by Vadhera Art Gallery in Hong Kong and Gallery Madras, New York

1988                      Retrospective 1958-88, organized by The Times of India, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

1976                      Gallery Chemould, Mumbai

1963                      Alliance Francaise, Mumbai

1959                      Gallery 59, Mumbai

Select Group Exhibitions


2015                     The Naked and the Nude: The Body in Indian Modern Art, Dag Modern, New York

                                Subcontinental Masters, Dubai Pop Up Exhibition, Aicon Gallery, Dubai

2014                     Immutable Gaze Part I: Masterpieces of Modern and Pre-Modern Indian Art, Aicon Gallery, New York

2013                     Remaking the Modern: An Indian Modern & Contemporary Art Exhibition, Alon Zakaim Fine Art, Dover Street

                                Glimpses of I am the Tiger, Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR), New Delhi

                                Ideas of the Sublime, presented by Vadehra Art Gallery at Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

                                QUARTO ‘13, Art Musings, Mumbai

                                The Drawing Wall, Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi

                                Color My World, presented by Mahua Art Gallery at Leela Galleria and Windsor Manor, Bangalore

                                Edge of Reason- and beyond, into pure creativity, presented by Indian Art Circle at Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

2012                     Talking Heads, Art Alive Gallery, New Delhi

                                Iconic Processions, Aicon Gallery, New York

Gallery Collection, Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi

                                Women: Sacred and the Temporal, Shrishti Art Gallery, Hyderabad

                                Contemporary: A Selection of Modern and Contemporary Art, prsented by Sakshi Gallery at The Park, Chennai

2011                      The Lost Sparrow, presented by Gallery Threshold at Visual Art Gallery, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

                                Masterclass, Dhoomimal Art Gallery, New Delhi

2010                      Figure/Landscape - Part One, Aicon Gallery, New York

2009-10               Unclaimed Spaces, Gallery Threshold, New Delhi

                                Master Class, The Arts Trust, Mumbai

2009                      Indian Art After Independence: Selected Works from the Collections of Virginia & Ravi Akhoury and Shelley & Donald Rubin, Emile Lowe Gallery, Hempstead

                                In Search of the Vernacular, Aicon Gallery, New York

                                Kalpana: Figurative Art in India, presented by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) at Aicon Gallery, London

2008                     Mapping Memories – 2, Painted Travelogues of Bali and Burma, Gallery Threshold, New Delhi

2007                      From the Vault, Aicon Gallery, London and New York

Sitaaray - A Galaxy of Artists, Indian Habitat Centre, New Delhi

2005                      Drishti / Vision – Indian Contemporary Artists, Valentine Willie Fine Art, Kuala Lumpur in collaboration with Bodhi Art Gallery

2004                      Confluence 2004, Aicon Gallery, New York

                                Jiva- Life, Contemporary Indian Painting, Bodhi Art Gallery, New York

2001                      Kitsch Kitsch Hota Hai, Gallery Espace, India Habitat Centre, New Delhi

The Sacred Prism III, Apparao Gallery, London, New York, San Francisco

1993                      Reflections and Images, Vadehra Art gallery at Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

1986                      Indian Women Artists, National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi

1980                    Exhibition in Washington D.C and New York




2015                     Abby Grey and Indian Modernism: Selections from the NYU Art Collection, Grey Art Gallery, New York University, New York

2013                     Palette Summer 2013, Palette Art Gallery, New Delhi

2012                     Art for Humanity, Coomaraswamy Hall, Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya, Mumbai

2011                     Of Gods and Goddesses, Cinema, Cricket: The New Cultural Icons of India, Jehangir Art Gallery, Mumbai

2011                     Resonance, Art Musings, Mumbai

2010                     Art Celebrates 2010: Sports and the City, represented by Art Alive Gallery at Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi to coincide with the hosting of the Commonwealth Games

                                Art Dubai 2010, presented by Aicon Gallery, New York

                                Manifestations IV, Delhi Art Gallery, New Delhi

                                ARCO 2010 Madrid, presented by Aicon Gallery, London

1980                      Paris Biennale, Paris, France

1968,71,75         1st, 2nd, 3rd International Triennale, Lalit Kala Akademi, Delhi




2000                      Awarded the Padma Shree by the Government of India

1959-61               Received French Government Scholarship for Higher Studies in Paris




Asian Art Museum, San Francisco

National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi.
Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi

Aicon Gallery, New York
Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi
Apparao Gallery, Chennai