Railways in India are much more than the lifeline of the transport system. They are a mystical world in themselves of steam, coal, electric, energy, mountains, plains, deserts – and the unknown destination – the light at the end of the tunnel.
Many artists have been inspired by the picturesque aura of life surrounding railways and its integration into our rural and urban worlds.
Here are some fine portrayals of the railway that will definitely make you look at them from a different perspective and see them brought to life in their artistic renderings.
1. Nostalgia of Indian Steam Locomotives by Kishore Pratim Biswas
Kishore’s childhood near a locomotive workshop in Kolkata inspired him to paint his series, “Nostalgia of India Steam Locomotives”. His enchanted depiction of the fogging giants, firemen, and railwaymen, make the viewers relive the bygone era where steam locomotives were a common sight.
2. Classic Steam – 3 by Bijay Biswaal
What happens when a railwayman turns into an artist? He immortalises his surroundings forever! An Odisha-born Railwayman by profession and an artist by passion, Bijay Biswaal captures the unnoticed, serene beauty of the railways through his remarkable paintings. His portrayal of life at the Indian platforms are a beautiful insight through an insider’s eyes.
3. Memories in Darjeeling Toy Train by Ranabir Saha
Memories In Darjeeling Toy Train 2 By Ranabir Saha
The century old Darjeeling Hill Railway, moving through the lush-green, scenic beauty of the Eastern Himalayas, is a World Heritage site today. Ranabir Saha makes you travel to the hills with this artistic depiction of Darjeeling Toy Train – taking you to the altitudes you never images such as the highest station in the world at Ghoom.
4. 6.40 Ki Last Local by Rahul Dhiman
6:40 Ki Last Local By Rahul Dhiman
Millions of people use the trains to travel every day and some routes are popular among the working class. Through this woodcut, Rahul Dhiman beautifully portrays daily train commuters from Ambala to Chandigrah. Sometimes the journey isn’t about the destination but becomes part of the routine.
5. Railgari by Shyamal Karmokar
Railgari By Shyamal Karmokar
Urban India may have shifted to air travel, but the heart of rural India still beats for the trains. Shyamal Karmokar poignantly showcases a train passing through an Indian village. The interactions and exchanges become a time of excitement and opaque daydreaming – just like the watercolors.
Click here to view a special curation of life at Indian platforms.