Chitra Kala Parishath

Chitrakala Parishath (CKP): A visit to the place is an experience in itself, and perhaps, that’s one reason why art lovers and artists alike flock to this place, and why not? Art exhibitions, craft shows, festivals of dance, music and theatre – you name it – it happens here. Amidst the greenery and rocks are simple sculpted structures which are monumental and bring about a feeling of pride in being a Bangalorean.

Knowing Chitrakala Parishath right from the days of its humble beginnings, Sri Nanjunda Rao would talk of his dreams in his small thatched one room studio in the late 1970s.

Sri Nanjunda Rao as we affectionately called him would go on endlessly about his vision of making the vast empty land that he got from the government into a purposeful existence, little knowing that this institution would stand as a landmark of Bangalore.

After nearly four decades of its existence, Chitrakala Parishath is now a model for art institutions in India. Today the brainchild of Sri Nanjunda Rao, has several firsts to its credit.

  • It has developed a unique art complex of international standards.
  • It introduced leather puppets to the world.
  • It undertook the survey of traditional styles of paintings and leather puppets.
  • It is equipped with a state of the art library with unparalleled infrastructure.
  • Its open air theatre caters to the needs of the visual arts.
  • It has introduced a methodical art education system.

Not far behind any international art galleries, Chitrakala Parishath has hosted and exhibited the works of several international and national artists.

Apart from having its own galleries of great artists like Dr. S. Roerich, Dr. Krishna Reddy, Mr. S. Kukke, Chitrakala Parishath also revived the Mysore traditional paintings under the guidance of master artist Sri Y. Subramanya Rao.

Right from the days of its inception (1964) the educational wing of Chitrakala Parishath (College of Fine Arts) has progressively expanded in several stages, imparting value-based art education to students.

Chitrakala Parishat’s art diplomas, PG Diplomas and degrees in various art subjects are recognized all over India and abroad. Today a graduate student of this institution has several career avenues like advertising, visual media, multimedia and designing. It also offers specialization courses in applied art, painting, sculpture, graphics, and art history. These courses are recognized by Bangalore University.

Sri K. S. Appajaiah the current principal of the college has been the backbone behind the growth of the institute.

Chitrakala Parishath not only promotes art and art education but also publishes books on art authored by great scholars like Prof Sri S. K. Ramachandra Rao, Dr. S. Roerich and others.

Not satisfied with its multifarious activities, CKP wants to further evolve as an international centre for arts.

Today Chitrakala Parishath misses the grand presence of the late Sri Nanjunda Rao, nevertheless it has a set of ambitious future plans waiting to be executed under the able secretaryship of Sri D. K. Chowta, who is not an unknown name in the art and industrial circles.

In the words of Mr. Chowta, “of our future plans these are few important ones that we plan for our institution.”

  • To make Chitrakala Parishath one of the best museums in south India.
  • To provide more space to artists and give importance to handicrafts.
  • To redo the open-air theatre with better facilities.
  • To introduce Masters courses in subjects like Conservation study, Photojournalism, Fashion designing, Ceramics and other job-oriented courses for the students.
  • To increase the number of computers in the institute.
  • To provide a ceramic studio, a bronze studio and a visiting artist’s studio which are lacking now.
  • To have fair system in education, to ensure fairness in admission and other activities of the Parishath.

“To execute our plans, we lack funds and thus are looking for grants from government, corporate companies, multinationals.” says Mr. Chowta.

Mr. Chowta also plans to make the late Sri Nanjunda Rao’s dream a reality – making Chitrakala Parishath a deemed university with an autonomous campus in a 14 acre land allotted by the government. Another ambitious plan is to have a research wing for advanced studies of art, multimedia study, collectors’ archives, etc.

With these plans Chitrakala Parishath is sure to make Bangalore an art capital, which will be recognized globally.

This institution stands as an inspiration to every artist and individual to pursue their passions with dedicated efforts and devotion, so that success will never be elusive.

Drishti’s take

The Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath has qualified teachers and neat galleries. The best art universities of our country, Baroda and Shantiniketan, get central aid and grants which enables them to do a better job. The Chitrakala Parishath also requires such aid.

Chitrakala Parishath

Art Complex,
Kumara Krupa Road,
Bangalore – 560001
Karnataka, INDIA
Ph: 22261816
Fax: 080-22263424