Often engulfed in shades of gray, blue, and black, Das Gupta’s luminous abstractions are vague homages to actual places and things. His earlier realistic landscapes—usually in watercolor or oil on canvas—are more obviously inspired by nature: sand dunes, rocks, and underwater life. Devoid of human presence, these works slowly evolved into fully abstract compositions, as in Night Street Scene.
Born in Bengal, Das Gupta spent his early years in northern India, in the city of Behrampur in the Punjab state. By 1937 he had moved to Calcutta to study painting at the Government College of Art and Craft. After graduating in 1943, he went to New Delhi to pursue a career as a commercial artist, and in 1963 he joined the faculty at the Delhi College of Art, where he taught for fourteen years.