There are many stories waiting to be told and these narratives, have greatly influenced the visual arts and culture in India. Contributing immensely to the Popular Culture, the time is upon us to now acknowledge and celebrate the lives and legacies of these artists.
The Ganesh Shivaswamy Foundation has commenced the process of cataloguing and studying the latter day artists.
Colourful and vibrant are the paintings created by these popular artists. They are called 'designs' in the printing industry and were used as exemplars for printing calendars, framing pictures, cinema posters, etc.
Worthy of mention are some great names in this visual narrative:
K Madhavan, an ivory carver from Thiruvananthapuram went on to be referred to as the 'Norman Rockwell of South India' by Stephen Inglis. M. Ramalingam, a disciple of C. Kondiah Raju was reputed for painting 'Baby Pictures.' Indra Sharma, early in this career painted for the calendar industry and now has returned to his roots- painting in the Nathdwara style. The pious and introspective M. C. Jegannath meditated upon the Lord before his brush touched paper. The devout bodybuilder and Hanuman bhakt, P. Sardar was in fact a muslim!
They spent their entire lives contributing to our cultural landscape. It is time for us to acknowledge these artists also.
Manavasi Krishnaswami Ramaswami Aiyangar (1886-1974) was an avid photographer who traveled the length and breadth of India taking photographs of temples, monuments and landscapes. These photographs, now in the collection of a family descendant is a veritable treasure of imagery of India during the early 20th Century.
The architectural landscape of India has been irretrievably altered with unmitigated commercialization that these treasures have either been destroyed or entirely modified.
The Ganesh Shivaswamy Foundation is in the process of identifying the locations of many of these buildings and will thereafter showcase them on a appropriate platform.