The Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art invites applications for The Ila Dalmia fica research Grant 2014 Deadline: 31 May 2014

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The Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art invites applications for

The Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant 2014

Deadline: 31 May 2014

Instituted by FICA, with the support of art historian and curator Yashodhara Dalmia in the memory of her sister Ila Dalmia, the annual grant aims to provide support research on Indian modern and contemporary art. The grant will be for a sum of Rs. Two Lakh and will focus on supporting independent research by students and scholars in India. The grant will support one research project a year.

The application is open to individuals who are committed to researching in the field of visual arts with particular focus on Indian modern and contemporary art. This could include important first-hand research and archiving of art and art historical material, or a critical study of Indian art history, art criticism and practice, or an interdisciplinary analysis of the theory and practice in the visual arts, or studies in the related domains of curation, exhibitions, collection and the art economy.


  • Applicant should be an Indian citizen.

  • Applicant should hold an under-graduate degree in any field.

  • Applications are open only to individuals.

  • The proposal can be part of a larger research project that is currently underway. The applicant must clearly chart out what portion of the research will be undertaken as part of this Grant.

The recipient of the Grant

  • Will be expected to complete their research within the one year period of the grant.

  • Will have to submit two copies of the completed final research paper, with references, bibliography and other documentation material at the end of the one year to FICA.

  • He/she will provide three interim reports to share the progress on the project.

  • Will be expected to travel to Delhi and present their paper at the annual Ila Dalmia Memorial Lecture to a public audience upon completion. This event will be financed by the Ila Dalmia FICA Committee and organised by FICA.

  • Will have to submit a final expense statement with a break-up of the funds received.

About Ila Dalmia

Ila Dalmia (1944-2003) was a passionate writer in Hindi and English prose and poetry and her interest extended to art, music and theatre. Her home in Delhi which she shared with her partner S.H. Vatsyayan, the legendary Hindi writer, popularly known as 'Ajneya' , was to become a hub for literary and artistic activities. In addition, the critical magazine for arts and literature Naya Pratik was started by her and Vatsyayan and was highly regarded for its new and experimental writing. Apart from several essays and articles, she had written a biographical novel Chat par Aparna and a volume of her collected works titled Ila was published shortly after her demise. She was also a generous patron of the arts and supported many young artists and writers. Ila died prematurely due to a critical illness but will be remembered by her friends and supporters as one of the most compassionate and inspirational cultural personalities of her time.

The research award which commemorates her generous support for the arts has been established with a donation by her sister, Yashodhara Dalmia, an art historian and independent curator based in New Delhi. She has written widely on art and her book Amrita Sher-Gil – A Life (Penguin/Viking, 2006) is a comprehensive account of the life and work of one of India’s first modern artists. She is the author of seminal books like The Making of Modern Indian Art: The Progressives (2001), of Memory, Metaphor, Mutations: Contemporary Art of India and Pakistan with Salima Hashmi (2007) and Journeys: Four Generations of Indian Artists (2011). She curated the inaugural exhibition at the NGMA (Mumbai) in 1996 titled The Moderns, which featured 200 paintings, sculptures, prints and drawings by the Progressive Artists. Her other curated shows include Souza in London, Volte-Face: Souza’s Iconoclastic Vision, Indian (Sub)Way and Tyeb Mehta: Triumph of Vision.

Yashodhara Dalmia has also instituted the Saraswati Dalmia Scholarship at SOAS
The School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), University of London, announces the Saraswati Dalmia Scholarship, to be awarded annually to an MPhil or Phd student taking up research in the field of contemporary and modern Indian art. Deadline for applications: end January each year.
(For details, see:

Application details for submission: Please note that incomplete applications will not be accepted.

  1. Completed Application Form – see pages 3 & 4.

  2. A Research Proposal (max. 2000 words) that gives a short description of the topic of study, research methodology and key research questions.

  3. A primary Reading List/Resources. Please include images or videos of works to support your proposal if necessary.

  4. Recent CV.

  5. A Complete Budget towards which the grant money will be spent (travel, accommodation, books, photocopying, printing, library fees, etc.)

  6. Two samples of published papers. You can also send an additional sample of unpublished writing.

  7. Names of two Referees with their complete contact details – name, position, organisation, telephone, email and postal address.

Deadline: 31 May 2014

The Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant 2014


Name of applicant:

Date of birth:

Educational Qualifications:




Title of paper and an abstract (not exceeding 250 words)


  • Completed Application Form with all the necessary additional documents (research proposal, bibliography, budget, recent CV, sample papers and referee details) to be sent to FICA via email at with Subject: Application for Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant.

  • Please include all the documents in a single email. If your application includes heavy files please use yousendit or wetransfer, or a similar such service to send your application.

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