INDIAN CONTEMPORARY ARTIST
- Born in 1942 (age 78–79) Burugupalli, Telangana State, India
- Lives and works in Hyderabad, Telengana State, India
UNDERSTANDING THE ARTIST
The artist states that the art education at the Hyderabad College of Art and Architecture left him frustrated and confused. Western art, in his opinion, was theoretical and structured, not as instinctive as Indian art. He had always been deeply intrigued by his village folks. Strong and calm, his mother was a big inspiration and he observed her scrutinously. He began painting her and things that surrounded her- her kitchen, pots and pans, the well, her clothes etc. This made him feel connected to his roots.
Vaikuntam started his journey in art with charcoal drawings. While he was still exploring techniques, he came out with his earliest charcoal series that portrayed the life of the village he grew up in. His earlier works were symbolic of the ethos of rural India. As his art evolved, so did his range of mediums. Along with charcoal on paper, he experimented with pencil drawings, transparent washes and finished some drawings with partial coloration.
Vaikuntam explains that he prefers using bright primary colours as he believes that composite colours are artificial or unreal, they do not exist in nature. Vivid pigments and fine, controlled strokes gives his art a depth and a sense of strength to it. Motifs are a significant feature in his work. Small patterns are used to depict textiles and jewellery - capturing the soul of Telangana men and women and adding body to his simple portraits.
Telangana men and women are the fundamental characters of Vaikuntam's work. Women, in particular, inspire him. He describes the women of his village as earthy, strong and sensual. Enamoured by the sensuality and proud demeanor of these women he attempts to capture their reverberating charm in his work. To him they represent the strength that is inherent in most Indian women.
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 2005, acrylic on canvas board, 10 x 8 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 1996, acrylic on wood, 8 x 17.5 x 11.5 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 1992, mixed media on paper, 12 x 10 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, charcoal on canvas, 11 x 8.5 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Couple with parrot, acrylic on canvas, 40 x 30 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 2008, acrylic on canvas, 48 x 54 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 2010, acrylic on canvas, 24 x 36 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 2012, acrylic on canvas, 21.5 x 29.5 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, 2013, triptych, acrylic on canvas, 48 x 84 in
Thota Vaikuntam, Untitled, gouache on paper pasted on board, 17.5 x 13.5 in