Mysore Pradesh Chitrakala Parishath was established in the residence of Aryamurthy, who was earlier worked with the CTI (Chamarajendra Technical Institute) at Mysore. He was the Founder President of the Institute. Prof. M.S.Nanjunda Rao (MSN) was responsible in motivating all these personalities, who were to contribute immensely to the making and maintenance of the Parishath, henceforth. Kengal Hanumanthaiah, the then Chief Minister of Karnataka (Mysore State) motivated the art fraternity to establish an consortium with regular art educational activities. The result of which was the Mysore Pradesh Chitrakala Parishath.
In order to evolve its growth, the power was strategically shifted to the politically connected Vaikunta Baliga. K.S.Nagarathnamma took over the responsibility after Baliga. The renowned politician Devraj Urs played a major role in the evolution and institutionalization of Parishath. His daughter, another philanthropists, Chandraprabha Urs also involved herself with the institution.
Devraj Urs consented to avail the space and was finalized by S.M.Krishna, Ramakrishna Hegde, Jeevraj Alwa and B.L.Shankar. Aryamurth was closely connected to Kengal Hanumanthaiah. MSN was a Khadi Board employee, till 1964. He quit the job and involved himself completely with the institution.
Artists who added towards the collection and creation of artworks from various art forms, in support of Parishath were Nicholas and Svetoslav Roerich, S.S.Kukke, Krishna Reddy, H.K.Khejriwal (art connoisseur who donated a sumptuous body of historic modern Indian artworks to Parishath’s permanent collection) among others.
Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath (KCP) is an Art Complex, operating in Bangalore from past five decades as the leading Center for Visual Arts. It is a landmark for visual culture. It comprises of a network of Museums, Galleries, Archive that stores pan-Indian Visual Culture that includes Folk, Traditional, Modern and Contemporary Art and Artists.
Parishath also has been successfully running the College of Fine Arts, affiliated to Bangalore University and is currently an Autonomous body with a NAAC accreditation of B++. Strategically located at the heart of the city (surrounded by Gandhi Bhavan, Khadi Bhandar, Hotel Ashoka, Golf ground and Sindhi school) KCP is already a tourist spot, a center for visual discourse and space for visiting artists from all over the globe. With a clear vision and ideology of its own, intending to inculcate, endorse and encourage contemporaryness in the practice and theory in visual culture, KCP is the happening place in India visual culture. Prof. M.S.Nanjunda Rao (19… –2003), art tutor, Principal and General Secretary was the main heart and soul behind KCP.
Karnataka Chitrakala Parishath, has been operating from past five decades (since mid 1960s) as an 'Art Complex' that has been hosting exhibitions, organizing camps, workshops and conducting national level art exhibitions. Renowned art personalities of the country, like Karl Khandalwala, Mulkraj Anand, G. Venkatachalam, Prof.K.G.Subramanyan, Laxma Goud, M.F.Hussain, Anjoli Ila Menon, Navjot Altaf, P.T.Reddy, K.K.Hebbar have visited, interacted and involved themselves with CKP and have been positive about its contribution to the art community at large.
The ‘Art Mart’ within the art complex showcases original artworks of artists which are on display for viewing and purchase. Books, prints and publications about artists and artworks, published both from KCP as well from external agencies are also available. Digital canvas prints of renowned artists like Raja Ravi Varma, Haldankar, Mysore and Tanjore Traditional Paintings, Folk Art, Art mugs, Cards are being regularly displayed and sold. Publications available here include those from KCP, Marg, Art India, Art & Deal, Art Etc.
‘Chitrasanthe’ an annual one day art fare conducted by KCP on the last Sunday of January, every year, is a mega-event, wherein anybody and everybody in art from throughout the country (and elsewhere) participate, interact and attend it. “It is the October festival of Art”. Usually Chitrasanthe facilitates at least thousand artists to display and sell their works, without charging them anything at all. The average business that takes place in a span of twelve hours on that day, runs to crores. This is a feather in the cap of KCP’s success