The National Gallery of Modern Art (NGMA) is the premier art gallery under the Ministry of Culture, Government of India. The main museum at Jaipur House in New Delhi was established on 29 March 1954 by the Government of India, with subsequent branches at Mumbai and Bangalore. Its collection of more than 14,100 works includes works by artists such as Thomas Daniell, Raja Ravi Verma, Abanindranath Tagore, Rabindranath Tagore, Gaganendranath Tagore, Nandalal Bose, Jamini Roy, Amrita Sher-Gil as well as foreign artists, apart from sculptures by various artists. Some of the oldest works preserved here date back to 1857. With 12,000 square meters of exhibition space, the Delhi branch is one of the world’s largest modern art museums.
Situated at the end of Rajpath, in the Central Hexagon around the India Gate, the building was a former residential palace of the Maharaja of Jaipur, hence known as Jaipur House. The butterfly-shaped building with a central dome and built in 1936, and designed by Sir Arthur Blomfield, after the construction of Lutyens’ Delhi. The Central Hexagon around the India Gate, where the buildings of leading princely states were situated, was itself designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.
Though the idea of the National Gallery was floated in 1949, it was formally inaugurated by Vice-president Dr S.Radhakrishnan in 1954, in the presence of Prime Minister Jawaharlal Nehru. Hermann Goetz (1898–1976), a noted German art historian became its first curator and in time it added new facilities such as Art restoration services, and Art Reference Library, and a Documentation Centre.
The gallery has works by artists including Thomas Daniell, Raja Ravi Verma, Abanindranath Tagore, Rabindranath Tagore, Gaganendranath Tagore, Nandalal Bose, Jamini Roy, Amrita Sher-Gil and various other artists.
The NGMA has a collection of modern sculptures by famous sculptors like D. P. Roy Choudhury, Chintamani Kar, and Ramkinkar Baij.
The NGMA has a large collection of photographs by Lala Deen Dayal, one of the pioneers of photography in India.