In the late 1940s, the Progressives were encouraged and received
support from an assortment of European Jewish émigrés who had
fled Europe with the rise of the Nazis to settle in Bombay. Walter
Langhammer, an art teacher as well as Rudolf von Leyden, who
was an art critic for The Times of India, were patrons. They
helped not only financially, but also by opening up a world of
European paintings to these young artists.
Krishen Khanna with Rudy Von Leyden , a respected art critic
The creation of the Progressive Artists Group is
entwined with that of independent India. A
culturally and religiously diverse cast of characters,
the artists came together to form an informal group
in the highly charged political climate of
cosmopolitan 1940s Bombay, as the city was then
Freedom to be modern.
Krishen Khanna with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi