Cholamandalam Arts Village (Cholamandal Center for Contemporary Art) Museum, ECR, Chennai


The Cholamandalam Arts Village and the Cholamandal Center for Contemporary Art museum is situated in Injambakkam (some distance before the VGP Golden Beach), East Coast Road (ECR), Chennai. It seems, this village is named after the Chola dynasty that ruled this region from 9th – 13th Century CE and encouraged all kind of artistic works. The art museum is open from 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM, daily.

Did you know that resident artists live in this village to create works of art? Originally established in 1966, the Cholamandalam Artists Village was created by Mr. K C S Paniker and his students. Even as early as 1970’s, the village had become self-sufficient (without any Govt. aid) by selling their own art works at various exhibitions, etc.

Later on, they decided to have their own art gallery and that gave birth to the ‘Cholamandal Center for Contemporary Art’, situated right at the beginning of the campus. There they have displayed drawings, paintings, sculptures, handicrafts, books and other artistic materials created by the artists living there and by the visiting artist members. A lot of artists from foreign countries regularly visit this place, in addition to Indian artists.

To say that the artistic works were stunning, is an understatement. It seems, the Madras arts movement, led by the artists in this village, is a very popular artistic movement in India that aims to modernize the Indian art. And, they have done it in style.

As with any other art gallery, photography was prohibited inside the museum/gallery. But, they allowed me to take photos of the sculptures outside/around the museum campus. Have a look at some photos I took there –









Since this place has artistic works wherever you go, some of the above works were actually hidden (behind)! If you go to this place try to locate all the sculptures shown here πŸ™‚ Who knows, you might find some new ones!

They are selling many drawings, paintings, sculptures, handicraft items and books inside this museum complex. It’s a good idea to buy them because, that way, you can encourage the arts movement created by their members.

The concept is similar to Kalakshetra (Chennai) and Auroville (Pondicherry), but this one is dedicated to arts and crafts.

Destination Infinity

Photos: Destination8Infinity. All photos published under this creative commons license.

Learn more/Source: Cholamandalam Artists’ Village, Wikipedia article.


  • Jeevan

    I know this place for very long time, but haven’t visited once. The artworks are impressive! Thanks for the post and pictures, its inspiring to check.

    • Rajesh K

      Try to visit it sometime. The art gallery inside is very impressive. Of course, the sculptures outside it are also interesting.

      Destination Infinity

  • Susan Deborah

    I have been to this Arts village and spent an eternity gazing at the art there. Fortunately for us, there was one artist who was present there at the time of our visit. We went to his house and spoke to him and also got introduced to many of his works. I really like the concept of having a whole place for only artists. I wish there were many such spaces for artists.

    Joy always,

    • Rajesh K

      I wish I had met an artist there… Lucky you! Yes, the concept is unique and the self-sustained economic model is excellent. Let’s hope more artists will be encouraged by such initiatives.

      Destination Infinity

    • Rajesh K

      I don’t know what plant it is. Yes, it does look fascinating! That’s why that photo is here πŸ™‚

      Destination Infinity

  • Kismitoffeebar

    Thanks for sharing this. I love visiting artist’s village and infact went to one in Orissa. Loved the experience and will be writing about it on my blog as well. would love to know what you think, when I write it!

  • rajalakshmi

    its really…..awesome…art works and are very effective and conceptual….i really luv that place….peace to live….