Satyajit Ray

Complete Set of 2 nos of commemorative postage stamps on Satyajit Roy :

Pather Panchali, Oscar, Bengali movieIssued by India

Issued on Jan 11, 1994

Issued for : The Department of Post salutes this Master of the art of cinema, through a setenant of commemorative stamps – one depicting a portrait of Satyajit with the Oscar and the other showing a scene from his first film Pather Panchali. These stamps are unique in using the Ray-Roman type-face for the first time on any India Postage Stamp and also for their size.

Credits :
Stamp Design : By India Security Press with material made available by the courtesy of Cine Central, Calcutta.
Ray-Roman type-face made available by the courtesy of Clarion Advertising Services Limited, Calcutta.
FDC : Dipok Dey
Information Brochure Design : Shankha Samanta 
Cancellation : Shankha Samanta

Type : Setenant pair of StampsMint condition

Colour : Multicolour

Denomination : 1100 & 600 Paise

Overall size : 10.50 x 3.50 c.m.

Printing size : 10.15 x 3.15 c.m.

Perforation : 13 x 13

Paper : Imported unwatermarked adhesive photogravure coated paper in size 50.8 cms x 53.5 cms.

Type face : Ray Roman

Number Printed : one million

Number per issue sheet : 12 set

Printing process : Photogravure process

Printed : India Security Press

Name : Satyajit Ray

Born on May 2, 1921 at Calcutta, Bengal Presidency, British India

Died on Apr 23, 1992 at Kolkata, West Bengal, India

About : 

  • Born on May 2, 1921, Satyajit Ray belonged to a lineage veined with the blood of Bengal Renaissance. His grandfather, Upendrakishore, was a renowned litterateur and illustrator, apart from being a pioneer in the world of typography. His father, Sukumar is still considered nonpareil in the realm of Bengali nonsense verse. The early grooming at home fully nurtured the artistic sensibilities of the young Satyajit.
  • He graduated from the Presidency College, Calcutta, in Economics and then his artistic inclinations took him to Shantiniketan of Tagore – a friend of the Ray family. At Shantiniketan his predilections for western art and music squared up to include oriental Arts under the tutelage of Nandalal Bose and Binod Behari Mukherjee, among others. Back in Calcutta, he was employed as a commercial artist, and also began to design book jackets for an established press a pursuit that brought him instant fame.
  • Film always held an over-riding attraction for Satyajit. He soon became a self-taught expert in the art of film-making. His direct involvement with Jean Renoir when he made the film, The River, in Calcutta, and seeing De Sica‘s Bicycle Thieves were vastly enriching experience for Satyajit, specially in the intricacies of making low-budget films. Pather Panchali, Satyajit’s first film, made in 1955, was the flowering of all his artistic acumen and it came after a prolonged struggle against heavy odds. The acclaim the film received world-wide, is now part of history of cinema. It was hailed not only as a film, but as work of art, deftly dealing with basic human emotions that touched the viewer universally, cutting across the barriers of language and race. Aparajito (1956) followed, and then came Apur Sansar (1959) which completed the famous Apu Trilogy.
  • This marked the onset of the New Wave in the Indian concept of film, and brought it recognition as an art-form. The film-maker was now acknowledged as an artist. It was Satyajit Ray who showed that like any other form of art, a film also needs to unfurl in its own parlance with a profusion of audio-visual details. The opus he left behind in films bear testimony to his prolific genius that also won international recognition shortly before his death when he was awarded the Oscar for Lifetime Achievement – a tribute which Satyajit himself considered the highest award that a film-maker can covet.
  • The artist in Satyajit emerged at its best in his films. Being a keenly observant asthete, he also excelled as a typographer, calligrapher and illustrator. He was a talented composer of music as borne out by his films. Satyajit, the writer penned science-fiction, mystery thrillers and short stories, which he wrote primarily for the young but won him instant fame among readers all round. His type-face designs, RayRoman and RayBizarre, won awards in a Swiss competition.
  • Satyajit Ray won innumerable film-awards at home and abroad, the Magsaysay Award for Photography in 1967 being one of these. He was conferred the Bharat Ratna, a few days before his death on April 23, 1992.
  • Text : Department of Posts.

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