Blog: Legacy Of Artist Namboodiri

Legacy Of Artist Namboodiri

Blog: Legacy Of Artist Namboodiri


  • Karuvattu Mana Vasudevan Namboothiri was an Indian painter and sculptor who was born on September 13, 1925. He is well known for his copper relief artwork and line art. He worked with many Malayalam authors, including Thakazhy Shivasankara Pillai, Kesavadev, M. T. Vasudevan Nair, Uroob, S. K. Pottekkatt, Edasseri Govindan Nair, and V.K.N. His graphics made a substantial contribution to the intellectual experience and visual attractiveness of their books.
  • One of India’s most productive literary illustrators is the artist Namboothiri. His pictures were in high demand and gave renowned authors’ writings profundity.
  • Chairman of the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi: He presided over this prestigious organisation that fosters and honours creative achievement as chairman of the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi. His impact and prestige in the art world were highlighted by this position.

 career as an artist, illustrator, sculptor, and advocate for the arts

  • In Chennai, where he started his professional career, Namboothiri helped K. C. S. Paniker finish an enormous painting for the Indian Railways.
  • He became well-known for being one of India’s most active literary illustrators.
  • Namboothiri organised an exhibition of 12 relief works after leaving Mathrubhumi and moved his attention to copper relief art.
  • While employed at Kalakaumudi, he produced remarkable illustrations for “Randamoozham,” a book by M. T. Vasudevan Nair. His drawings gave him a great deal of pleasure and gave him the nickname “Paramashivan of line sketches.”
  • Another skill Namboothiri was well renowned for was “finger painting.”
  • He based his “Lohabharata” series of copper relief paintings on numerous incidents from the Mahabharata. In addition, he produced a second series based on the myth known as “Parayi Petta Panthirukulam.”
  • For Cholamandal, Namboothiri created several monumental sculptures, such as “Modern Family on a Scooter” and “Maithuna.”
  • Additionally, he produced a 500-foot-long (150-meter-long) outdoor drawing that depicts moments from the Indian liberation movement.
  • Two times, Namboothiri presided over the Kerala Lalitakala Academy. The Academy built its building in Thrissur during his leadership.
  • He significantly contributed to the transformation of Kochi’s Durbar Hall Ground into an art gallery.
  • Namboothiri created a graphic record of Kerala’s cities for his use in a project he termed “Nagarangal” (The Cities). He began in Kochi.

Legacy Left Behind

  • Namboothiri was pals with cartoonist and film director G. Aravindan.
  • Namboothiri was asked to serve as the film’s art director when Aravindan made “Uttarayanam,” his directorial debut.
  • Five Kerala State Film Awards were given to “Uttarayanam” in 1974, including the Award for Best Art Director, which went to Namboothiri.
  • Namboothiri received the Raja Ravi Varma Award from the Kerala Lalithakala Akademi in 2003. In 2001, this honour was established, and Namboothiri was the third laureate.
  • The artistic accomplishments of Namboothiri go beyond movies. For his work on the “Kuttikalude Ramayanam” (Ramayana for kids), he was given the Bala Sahitya Award for finest illustration from the Kerala State Institute for Children’s Literature in 2004.
  • Ask Movies produced a documentary named “Namboodiri-Varayude Kulapathy” (Namboodiri — The Emperor of Lines). Binuraj Kalapeedhom’s 44-minute documentary follows Namboothiri’s life from his early years through his stay in Chennai and into his 80s.
  • Namboothiri’s memories are collected in a book by N. P. Vijayakrishnan titled “Varayum Vaakkum” (Lines and Words), which also contains some of his artwork.
  • “Namboothiriyude Sthreekal” (The Women of Namboothiri) is the title of another book written and published by Vijayakrishnan. This book has a foreword by Mohanlal and numerous line drawings of women by the artist.

Overall, Namboothiri had a diverse and accomplished career as an artist, illustrator, sculptor, and advocate for the arts in Kerala. His contributions to the field and his dedication to documenting the cultural heritage of Kerala through his artwork were widely recognized and appreciated. Even after his passing on July 7, 2023, Artist Namboothiri’s work continues to inspire and captivate audiences. His artistic style and profound contributions to literature and film leave a lasting impact on the world of art.