Born in 1937, Ganesh Pyne joined Government college of Arts and Craft in 1959 after finishing school and was particularly drawn towards the skeletal remains of humans and animals. This eventually became the subject of his canvas with death being the epicentre of his paintings. In 1960s he started his career at Mandar Mullick’s studio by working as a book illustrator and sketching for animated movies. He also joined Society of Contemporary Artists. It was hard to make ends meet those days as he had little money to buy colours. Yet he kept drawing with pen and ink. His first painting was titled ‘Winter morning’ picturing him and his brother going to school together. Although, he was a calm and composed man outside, his art was rebellious, venting his anger and dismay in the form of skull, cadavers, creepy faces in the backdrop of dark and blue shades. He even depicted less noticed mythological characters like Amba, Ekalavya and others whose life was reflective of miseries and curse. His art is a visual tour to the horrors perceived and experienced by him and his characters. Ganesh Pyne Paintings started with watercolour but eventually moved to gouache and later to tempera as his medium.
Ganesh Pyne’s canvas often resonates the uncomfortable yet inevitable side of living beings, ‘Death’. Being a contemporary artist of Bengal school, his very Indian yet dark artworks revolve around the legends and lore of Bengal. Having been born and brought up in Kolkata’s decaying buildings and listening to stories narrated by his grandmother about Bengali folklores and reading through Bengali Children’s magazines, his imagination received wings that was hard to contain. However, it was Kolkata riots during pre-independence time in 1946 that left a lasting impression on his 9 years old brain, when he encountered countless dead bodies piled one over the other. This incident moulded his artistic fancy destine towards shady imagery and eerie fantasy.