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Home > Auctions > 22nd February 2022 > F. N. Souza Sketch of a Bearded Male

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LOT 0288

GBP (£) 400 - 600
EUR (€) 480 - 720
USD ($) 540 - 820

Opening Bid
£1 (EUR 1; USD 1) (+bp*)

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F. N. Souza Sketch of a Bearded Male

Dated 1970 AD

An inked sketch on beige-washed card of a facing male bust with shoulder-length hair and short beard, wearing a smock; the facial features are slim and elongated, the nose and mouth exaggerated while the eyes are set high on the face; radiating lines around the head and minimal detailing to the clothing, in the Art Brut tradition of naïve treatment derived from Dadaism and other 20th century art movements, supplied within a black card reveal; on the top right attributed to F. N. Souza. 118 grams total, 50.8 x 38.8cm including mount (20 x 15 1/4"). Fine condition. [No Reserve]

Personal collection of Harmadar Singh Thind; thence by descent.
Private family collection of a West London gentleman.

British Asian artist Francis Newton Souza (12 April 1924–28 March 2002) was a founding member of the Progressive Artists' Group of Bombay. He studied at the Sir J. J. School of Art in Mumbai but was expelled in 1945, having pulled down a Union Flag during a ceremony; he also supported the Quit India Movement of which the aim was to encourage the British authorities to leave the subcontinent, and joined the Communist Party of India. In 1948, some of his paintings were shown in London as part of an exhibition on Indian art while his work was under attack from his own Goan community in Mumbai. Souza emigrated to London the following year after complaints against him were made to the police for obscenity. He is acknowledged to have inspired his protégé, M.F. Husain. Souza's career developed so that he participated in several shows, receiving positive reviews from the art world.