The Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata started its foray during the early 1930s, when a small Indian Museum room began to be used for the purpose of the art society. Jawaharlal Nehru visited Kolkata in the 1950s to attend a violin concert of Yehudi Menuhin. A discussion between Nehru and Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy took place, where it was suggested that Calcutta (now Kolkata) deserved its own art gallery.
Lady Ranu Mukherjee was commissioned to select a suitable land where the art gallery could come up. The Academy of Fine Arts, Kolkata building was erected between 1959-1960. Chairman of the Academy's Board of Trustees provided the funds for the erection of the building.
The Academy of Fine Arts offers several interesting attractions to the art connoisseurs. It will take any visitor about 2 hours to cover all the attractions. The textile museum of the academy offers exquisite Dakhai, Patola, Jamdani, and Benarasi silk items. For glimpses of some of the most wondrous Persian carpets, you should visit the carpet museum of the Academy of Fine Arts.
For a fascinating journey through history of Bengal art, you can visit the Gallery of Contemporary Art. Some of the famous masterpieces that have been put up at the gallery include works of Rabindra Nath Tagore, Abanindra Nath Tagore, and Gyalzen.
The state-of-the-art auditorium of the academy serves as another major attraction. The academy auditorium hosts theater, dance, and dramas at different times of the year. The Studio and Sketching club of the Academy of Fine Arts is another must-visit place. Painting and sculpturing classes are regularly held within the academy.
A visit to the Academy of Fine Arts in Kolkata would present a vivid picture of Bengal's fascination with art.