Science is testament to the fact that art has the power to heal and transform the heart, mind and body. With a mix of modern and contemporary art and art-enthusiasts interspersed across the city, Bangalore is home to several of the country’s most reputed artists, comedians, musicians, photographers, dancers, curators and entertainers. While the rest of the world flails to its own distinct tune, the city is at the leading front of the avant-garde art scene in India. From the most exquisite art galleries that depict India’s rich cultural heritage to exhibits of ground-breaking contemporary art and fusion styles, Bangalore is every artist’s nirvana. Open air installations and exhibits coupled with present-day modern art movements; the city grows on you like a dream-turned-reality.
Travelers, globe-trotters and tourists, come join us as we take you through some of the city’s most cherished art galleries and avenues that are worthy of great contemplation for the way it induces thought and inspires profundity.
- Chitrakala Parishath
Established in 1960 by late M. Arya Murthy and founder secretary late M.S. Nanjunda Rao, the Chitrakala Parishath stands at the forefront of the visual art space in South India. The Parishath is a compendium of museums, galleries, and archives that exhibit an invaluable and versatile collection of Pan-Indian visual culture which includes folk, traditional, modern and contemporary art.
The Parishath is home to several masterpieces by various artists who have contributed to its rich and prolific display. Well-known artists Svetoslav Roerich has donated several of his paintings as well as paintings by his father to the Parishath; not just that, Nanjunda Rao’s Chitrakala Vidyalaya was added to the Parishath in 1964 and has received world-wide acclamation as an esteemed art centre of the state. Over several years, the Parishath has added to its burgeoning desire to expand art recognition by adding 18 galleries – of which 13 carry permanent collections of paintings, sculptures and folk art, an open air theatre and also a graphic studio, thereby turning it into a seasoned and full-grown art complex.
A popular tourist destination, the Parishath is a centre for visual discourse and promotes a healthy and conducive space for artists from all over the world. Several other galleries within the Parishath are rented out to hold exhibits by reputed and well-known artists across the globe. Through various courses and studies offered, the Chitrakala Parishath strives to give character and personality and promote thought in the way art is taught and perceived across the world.
Phone no.: #080 2226 1816
Art Complex 1, Kumarakrupa Rd,
Near The Lalit Hotel, Kumara Park East,
The Parishath is open on all days of the week with visiting hours between 10am–5:30pm.
The Parishath is closed on all Sundays.
The Ranga Shankara is one of the most well-known theatres in Bangalore and is home to several plays across the country. Located in South Bangalore in a place called J.P. Nagar, the Ranga Shankara is run by the Sanket Trust. In remembrance of her late husband Shankar Nag, an auditorium was opened for inauguration in 2004 by renowned Kannada actor Arundathi Nag. With an elaborate stage set-up consisting of four green rooms and state-of-the-art sound, lighting and technical amenities, the Ranga Shankara boasts in its powerful acoustic capabilities such that very minimal to zero amplification is required. The Shankara also has a bookstore that is an assemblage of many theatre and performance –related books along with an environment that promotes a healthy art-space in the city. With a café that serves traditional food such akki rotis and bhajjis to soups and herbed bread rolls, the café is a perfect premise for a relaxed afternoon with some book reading and thought-provoking tranquility. Not only that, it creates an environment for various artists to interact with audiences and other artists after a show.
With over 2,700 performances enacted since its beginning – in Kannada as well as 20 other languages, the Ranga Shankara is well known for its effort in promoting theatre in all languages and also opens its doors to several artists at extremely low rental fares. The Shankara is also known for their annual theatre festival which brings together plays from different parts of the country, allowing guests a wide range of theatre genres to choose from. The festival has become a pivotal part of Bangalore theatre enthusiasts and is a widely known integral part of the Bangalore theatre scene.
Phone: 080 2649 3982
Founder: Arundathi Nag
Founded: 28 October 2004
36/2, 8th Cross Rd,
R K Colony, 2nd Phase,
- P. Nagar, Bengaluru,
Depends upon the theatre events lined up.
- National Gallery of Modern Art
The National Gallery of Modern Art showcases about 500 art exhibits that are spread across a corridor, several tiny rooms and spacious galleries that are situated on two different floors. These exhibits have been placed structurally and purposefully, classifying it into broad categories based on time periods, art schools and various other popular artists.
On taking a walk inside the National Gallery of Modern Art, one is faced with numerous paintings of well-known artists such as Raja Ravi Verma, Jamini Roy, Amrita Sher-gil, the Tagore brothers and Rabindranath Tagore along with a wide spread of other modern and contemporary artists. There is more than enough to catch the art-eye, with intelligent art pieces that are guaranteed to take the viewer out of daily monotone for two whole stimulating hours.
Phone: 080 2234 2338
Founder: Ministry of Culture, Government of India
49, GF, Manikyavelu Mansion,
Palace Road, Vasanth Nagar,
Bengaluru, Karnataka 560052
The National Gallery of Modern Art is open on all days of the week with visiting hours between 11am–6:00pm. It remains closed on Mondays.
- Tipu Sultan’s Summer Palace
This Indo-Islamic architectural marvel was once upon a time the summer home of Tipu Sultan, the ruler of Mysore. The construction of the summer palace first began within the walls of the Bangalore Fort by Tipu Sultan’s father Hyder Ali, who had overthrown the marathas to lay siege over Mysore. The architecture of the fort was completed in the year 1791 during the reign of Tipu Sultan and soon became his summer abode.
Several parts of the historical site were built using expensive teak with its pillars, arches and balconies lined with very intricate adornments akin to that time period. It is said that the sultan held his court assemblies on the eastern and western balconies that are situated on the upper floor of the palace. A sight for artistic revelry, there are paintings inside that showcase how the sultan envisioned his throne, with several gold sheets and rare emerald stones adorning the walls of the throne. The sultan swore to never use the throne until he had obliterated the British army. Unfortunately, on the 4th of May, 1799, the British invaded the fortress at Seringapatam and killed the sultan, after which they dismantled the throne and auctioned off all of the stones as it was too expensive to be afforded whole by any single person. Shortly after the death of the sultan, the British converted the palace for their own use and made it an official secretariat.
Today, several of the rooms situated on the ground level have been converted into a museum as an ode to Tipu Sultan’s rule and reign over Mysore and its neighboring kingdoms. The palace is in itself a memoir, lined with souvenirs of a historical time period showcasing the reign of the sultan. Some of the artifacts include his actual clothes, crown, as well as a few historical pieces that invoke the memory of his father Hyder Ali.
Although situated right in the middle of the city, the palace is a haven in the midst of the city’s madness exuding a distinct and addictive calmness around. It is indeed an architectural marvel, one that leaves visitors in awe of its sheer beauty and statuesque nature. It is also maintained well. The lawns surrounding the palace are well maintained adding to the charm of the palace, and making it one of the most photogenic spots in Bangalore. To truly enjoy the palace, set aside a good 3-4 hours of time to drink in the beauty and the historic marvel that is the palace.
Architectural style: Indo-Islamic architecture
Founder: Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan
Tippu Sultan Palace Rd,
Open on all 7 days of the week from 8:30am – 5:30pm
Pablo Picasso once said – “The purpose of art is washing away the dust of daily life off our souls”. This season, take a break from the mundane and satisfy your artistic soul. If you’re looking for a beautiful place to immerse yourself in the art that surrounds you, book your stay at one among the many hostels, hotels and homestays available, and experience Bangalore like never before.
Being centrally located and well-connected, these artistic and soulful spaces offer the just the right kind of tranquility to unwind amidst the hustle and bustle of the daily grind. Surround yourself with some of the greats this holiday season and make it a trip that imprints itself down memory lane. Right from visits to some of Bangalore’s finest art galleries, music venues, book stores, gardens and parks to some of the finest museums, give yourself one of the most immersive experiences of a lifetime.
Do you have a flair for art or take pride in being an artist yourself?
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