Gulam Rasool Santosh, widely known in the world of modern Indian art as “Santosh”, was born in Srinagar in 1929, in Kashmir. Initially trained in painting, weaving and papier-mâché, he won a Government of India scholarship to study Fine Art at the M.S.University, Baroda, under the late Prof.N. S. Bendre.
Early in his career Santosh started out with his deep love for Cézanne and the Cubist treatment of the pictorial space.
Santosh was an acclaimed mystic poet in Kashmiri, and also wrote profusely in Urdu. His Urdu novel Samandar Pysasa Hai drew praise from the literati, and 1979 the Sahitya Akademi awarded him for his collection of poems in Kashmiri, titled Besukh Ruh.
Since 1953, Santosh held over 30 one-man shows in India, U.S.A., Canada, Japan, Hong Kong and Singapore-. His paintings had been exhibited in international shows, notably at the Sao Paolo Biennale (1969,1972), Triennale-India (1968, '78), ‘Contemporary Indian Art’, National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi (1 984), and the Neo-Tantra Art', U.C.L.A., Los Angeles (1 986). He received the National Award in 1973, and Padma Shri in 1977, and won the Artist of the Year Award in New Delhi in 1984.
Gulam Rasool Santosh died on 10th March 1997, in New Delhi.