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Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant 2015


The Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art invites applications for the Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant 2015.
The Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant, instituted by the Foundation for Indian Contemporary Art, with the support of art historian Yashodhara Dalmia, aims to encourage research in the field of Indian modern and contemporary art. The grant amount of Rs 2 Lakh will support the research project for one 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 and above 18 years of age.
  • 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 make a presentation at a public forum along with the scholar delivering the annual Ila Dalmia Memorial Lecture. This event will be financed by the Ila Dalmia FICA Committee and organized by FICA.  
  • Will have to submit a final expense statement with a break-up of the funds received.

Application Deadline: 10 August 2015*

Download the Application Form – MSWord or PDF

Please read the application form carefully for submission details. Incomplete applications will not be accepted.

Launched in 2013, the Ila Dalmia FICA Research Grant supports research in the field of modern and contemporary art with particular focus on Indian art. The grant has been instituted with the support of art historian and curator Yashodhara Dalmia in the memory of her sister, the acclaimed writer and poet Ila Dalmia (1994-2003) and her lifelong support to the arts.

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.
Yashodhara Dalmia is an art historian and independent curator based in New Delhi. Yashodhara Dalmia 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).

Yashodhara Dalmia has also instituted the Saraswati Dalmia Scholarship at SOAS, UK
(For details, see http;//

* please note that this is the revised deadline. Our previous email with 31 May deadline was incorrect.