platform from which to challenge the insipid forms of traditional art then
Sangam. Though starting with two or three students, eventually these two
institutions became the conduits for his creative ideas.
In the 19 years that Kulkarni was Director of Triveni’s Art Department, he
trained a number of brilliant students who are eminent artists today.
Others, such as Gade, Gaitonde and Laxman Pai gravitated towards Delhi
from other parts of India to work and some eventually settled there.
The famous names in Delhi today, are, among others Aryan, Anjoli Ela
Menon, Arpana Caur, Arpita Singh, Kishen Khanna, Paramjit Singh,
Rameshwar Broota, Ram Kumar and Satish Gujral.
When reputed painter and sculptor D.P. Roy Chowdhury became the
Superintendent of the Madras College of Art in 1929, he brought with
him the traditions of the Bengal School. In his thirty years in Madras, he
tried to synthesize Eastern ideas with Western techniques, thus providing
the required impetus towards modernism in the south.
But it was K.C.S. Panikar succeeding Roy Chowdhury as Principal, who
pioneered a new trend in painting. In the late fifties and early sixties, he
led a small group of promising artists including N. Viswanadhan, A.P.
Santharaj, Redeppa Naidu and Ramanujam, trying to extricate themselves
from the grip of the Western Renaissance art tradition.
The figurative style of folk art, the anecdotal style of Indian miniatures,
the grand epic style of traditional sculpture and the enrichments of iconic
and calligraphic imagery, all became salient features in their work.
Premier art institutions sprang up in other states of South India. And
artists from the South have since made their presence felt in the national
and international arena. They include L. Munuswamy, Acchutan Kudallur,
Surya Prakash, Yusuf Arakkal, K. M. Adimoolam and K.R. Subban.
Veteran Goan artist Laxman Pai trained at the JJ School of Art in
Bombay and worked for a while in that city. Subsequently, he spent ten
years in Paris, and after his return settled down to work in Delhi. Finally,
he opted to settle down in his home territory of Goa.
The history of contemporary Indian art over the last six decades has been
one of dynamic evolution. Over the years Indian artists have evolved a