“The chair has been an usual image in my works for the past two years,” says Rajiv Ramachandran, a young sculptor from Mavelikkara. “I was struck by the image of a small girl sitting on a chair made specially for her at her house in Kolkata. The scene made me think over the idea that there is a chair -- a seat -- reserved for each and everybody in this world. Since then I have been carving out chairs: wooden, comfortable, broken, and even lost chairs.” Rajiv is in Kozhikode to participate in the Silpanagaram Project being carried out jointly by the Lalithakala Academy and District Tourism Promotion Council.
Rajiv says that the path to become a professional sculptor was never smooth. His father, a building painter, wanted him to get a government job, which would ensure a regular monthly income. “But the pull of talent was intense,” says Rajiv. As a child, Rajiv would make small objects using clay. “My schoolteachers encouraged me a lot and would ensure that I took part in many competitions. In fact, during my high school days, I have taken part in state-level clay modeling competitions.”
After he completed his bachelor’s degree in physics from Mavelikkara, Rajiv joined the College of Fine Arts, Thiruvananthapuram. “My four years at the College of Fine Arts were crucial in the formation of the sculptor in me.” he says. “I met many masters like Jeevan Thomas.”
After passing out in 2011, Rajiv had no doubts about pursuing a Master in Fine Arts degree in sculpturing from Santiniketan in West Bengal. “My experiences at Santiniketan made me a true artist,” he says. “The formal conclusion of my masters is nearing. But I will stay back in Kolkata as I feel that there is something more I have to do there.”