Rajendra Dhawan was born in 1936 in New Delhi. He studied at the Delhi School of Art from 1953-58, and at Belgrade from 1960-62. He had founded a group “The Unknown” which held shows from 1960-64. He taught painting in India until 1962 and later received a grant to journey to Yugoslavia where he resided from 1964 till 1966.
Dhawan evolved a subtle, complex style with unmistakable poetics of reluctance. His works were quiet and reluctant, unwilling to impose itself or even assert its vision. It made you see yourself, discover and connect rather than state either its intimations or clearly delineate its directions. His works are visual experiences which can hardly be verbalised. The viewer must look at them patiently to imbibe their reality.
Has held several exhibitions of his work in India and Europe. Some of his one man shows were held at Galerie du Haut-Pave, Paris; Galerie Horn, Luxembourg; Gallery Chemould, Mumbai; Tawar Gallery, New York; Vadehra Art Gallery, New Delhi and Galerie Francois Mitaine. His work is represented in several collections in India and France, including the National Gallery of Modern Art, the Jehangir Nicholson Collection, the Lalit Kala Akademi, Bharat Bhavan Museum and National Foundation of Contemporary Art, Paris.
Dhawan lived and worked in Paris since 1970. He passed away in 2012.