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