Kondapalli Sheshagiri Rao

One of the most prominent and accomplished artist of yesteryears is Kondapalli Sheshagiri Rao. He is also considered as one of the pioneers of Aqua texture painting in India. Rao’s predilection for classical art is clearly evident in most of his paintings as the placement and stances of elongated figures are inspired from Indian painting and classical, medieval temple sculpture. He made copies of Kakatiya temples, wrote on Indian mural techniques and aesthetics and also executed mural paintings using dissimilar material. Undeniably he was the master of Oriental technique, painted more than 1000 beautiful art works dealing with varied themes. His oil paintings evoke Indian style of treatment with a two dimensional quality rather than illusory naturalistic rendering. However few of his works were also largely inspired by rustic life of Telangana. His paintings are literal visual translations of epics, mythology and history employing logical visual vocabulary. The episodic narrations against the verdant landscapes are conceived and recreated as elucidated in the literature. Interestingly, he gives equal importance to the characters such as Ahalya, Guha, Godadevi etc, which are shown alongside chief protagonists such as Lord Shri Rama. Apart from figurative art, he tried his hand in expressionistic and abstract painting as well, which earned him immense critical acclaim.

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