Artist A Ramachandran dies from prolonged illness at 89

Renowned artist A Ramachandran died from prolonged illness at his residence here on Saturday. He was 89.
Artist A Ramachandran
Artist A Ramachandran

New Delhi | Renowned artist A Ramachandran died after prolonged illness at his residence here on Saturday. He was 89.

"He was sick for quite some time now and passed away at 9 this morning from medical complications,” his son Rahul told PTI.

Ramachandran will be cremated at the Lodi Road crematorium on Monday at 2.30 pm, he added.

Born in 1935 in Attingal, Kerala, Ramachandran was known for his monumental canvases, sculptures, colourful oil, watercolour paintings.

After graduating with a degree in Malayalam literature from Kerala University, he went on to receive a diploma in fine arts and crafts from kala Bhavan in Santiniketan.

While studying art under masters like Ramkinkar Baij and Benod Behari Mukherjee, Ramachandran began his lifelong research on Kerala's temple murals.

Influenced by Baij and Mukherjee, the young Ramachandran too followed an expressionist style that reflected pain and misery of urban life, especially the suffering he had witnessed in a post-partition Kolkata.

In the later part of his career, Ramachandran turned his eye towards the tribal communities of Rajasthan and extensively painted their lives and culture.

In 2002, he was elected a Fellow of the Lalit Kala Akademi and received the Padma Bhushan for outstanding service to the nation in 2005.

People from the art fraternity termed his death a huge loss to the art community.

"Ramachandran was not only a great artist but the most wonderful person, and our gallery's hugest champion. It's been a very special journey and relationship working with him for nearly three decades. May he rest in peace; he will be dearly missed and remembered by all of us," Arun Vadehra, owner of Vadehra Art Gallery, told PTI.

Another friend and artist Bose Krishnamachari shared about having spent an hour with Ramachandran a month ago when the latter discussed some ideas with the art curator.

"I met him recently, spent an hour with him. He had a lot of ideas he was discussing with me. He was talking about education, he was very interested in sharing his beliefs. In my memory, I always had an incredible time whenever I met him. And I have shown his work in Kerala. He wanted to produce a lot of children's books, this was the last discussion we had,” he said.

Kerala governor Arif Mohammed Khan also paid condolences on the artist's death.

"Heartfelt condolences on the sad demise of Padmabhushan A.Ramachandran, noted artist hailing from Kerala. His paintings which were influenced by rural life & myths attained global fame. May his soul attain Mukti," Khan posted on X.

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