National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi

The National Gallery of Modern Art (NCMA) is one of the most famous art galleries in the country, managed by the government of India. It is home to some of the most celebrated art pieces created by distinguished Indian and international artists including Raja Ravi Verma, Rabindranath Tagore, and Amrita Sher-Gil. Some of the oldest art pieces date black to 1857, and attracts huge following.

Read more about Top 6 Art Galleries in Delhi


NCMA was founded in the late 1954 to preserve and maintain the artistic traditions of the country. The gallery is located on the central hexagon surrounding the India Gate, close to the Rajpath. Currently once the official residential complex Maharaja of Jaipur in Delhi, the palace now is hosts the NCMA building. In the past few years, the building has been expanded thrice its size and now has a preview theatre, new auditorium, library, conservation laboratory, academic section, cafeteria and museum shop.

Highlights of National Gallery of Modern Art

Address: Shershah Road near India Gate Jaipur House, New Delhi, Delhi 110003

Opening time: 11:00 am to 8:00 pm (Monday and National Holidays closed)

Tickets: Children Free, Adults – INR 20 (for Indians), INR 500 (for Foreign tourists)

Important exhibits: Paintings of Jamini Roy, Abanindranath Tagore, and Amrita Sher-Gil, photographs by Lala Deen Daya

Nearest bus stop: National Gallery of Morden Art

Nearest metro station: Khan Market


Layout and Architecture of the Gallery

Located in the grand Jaipur House, the National Gallery of Modern Art was established as a safe haven to the contemporary and modern art. Later on, new wings were added to the structure to make room for the outstanding collection of paintings and artworks withing the gallery. The expansion has made the gallery, one of the largest modern art museums in the world.

The three-storied structure, resembles a butterfly from the top, has a giant central dome. Lower floors of the monument house the permanent galleries, exhibition areas, and the curio shops. The upper floors are dedicated to library, lecture rooms, and staffroom. Vast garden areas complement the existing building, enhancing its beauty manifolds.

Important Artworks at National Gallery of Modern Art

Overall, the NCMA is home to over 17,000 art objects including photographs, prints, illustrations, paintings by contemporary and modern Indian artists. Most of the exhibits in the museum are either on permanent loan or gifts by private collectors. The museum even went on the purchase a few paintings growing its collection exponentially.

Some of the popular exhibits of the museum are:

a.  Women holding a fruit

Artist: Raja Ravi Verma 

One of the popular Indian artists, Ravi Varma was a self-taught artist hailing from the royal family of Travancore. Varma used techniques of European naturalism to present the interesting visual depiction of Indian subjects. In the painting, one can observe an innocent teasing gaze of the subject, inviting the observer to take the fruit from her hands. The tenderness of the paintings is almost intoxication.

b.  Three girls

Artist: Amrita Sher-Gil

Made in 1935, the painting is one of the most celebrated creations of the artist. In the painting, one can see three colorfully dressed Indian women contemplating over something. The artwork carefully uses colors, tones, and facial expressions to indicate the subject’s inner feelings.

Some other important works of the artist in display at National Gallery of Modern Art include Hungarian Gypsy Girl, Dressing Table, Mother India and multiple still life paintings.

c.  Bodhi tree made with utensils

Artist: Subodh Gupta

The NGMA houses exclusive collection of sculptures of by important Indian and international artists. Bodhi tree by Subodh Gupta is an interesting twenty-foot art piece make entirely of stainless steel.
Overall, a trip to the National Gallery of Modern Art can be an offbeat and interesting venture for the visitors.

d.  In bondage

Artists: Pradosh Dasgupta

The bronze sculpture by Prodosh Dasgupta is another important artwork in the gallery. The huge structure represents oppression and bonded human feelings – a possible inspired from the Indian freedom struggle.


How to Reach?

Being located close to the India Gate, the museum is easily accessible from the different corners of the city.

★ 1. Nearest bus stop: National Gallery of Modern Art bus stop
Busses halting here – 623, 336A, 410CL, 894CL, 450, 47ACL, 47ASTL, 166, 966, 624ACL, 181A, 623, 336A, 623, 410CL, 894CL, 450, 966, 47ACL, 623, 181, 181A, 624ACL, 502, 156
Fare: The base fare for Delhi buses is ranges around INR 15 increasing with every kilometer.

★ 2. Nearest metro station – Khan Market Metro Station
Line: Violet line
Fare: The base fare starts with INR 10, and increases with every kilometer.

★ 3. Taxi and app-based cabs
Visitors can book a taxi for National Gallery of Modern Art trip. Taxis usually charge a base fare of INR 30.