The fine arts attraction

Drawing from life: Students of Bharathiar Palkalaikoodam at work sketching a model in class.

Drawing from life: Students of Bharathiar Palkalaikoodam at work sketching a model in class.   | Photo Credit: Photo: T. Singaravelou


The two-decade old institution has been a major source of learning arts and music for students from Puducherry and outside.

Greater scope along with plenty of learning opportunities have led to an increase in the demand for courses in fine arts. In fact, courses in fine arts have evolved over the years, offering a wide range of latest know-how in the visual communication arena.

At Bharathiar Palkalaikoodam (BPK), the only institution teaching various courses in fine arts and performing arts in Puducherry, the number of students seeking admissions has been increasing over the years. This government institution consists of three streams — Music, Dance and Fine Arts.

“Over the years, the demand for fine arts is growing. There is intense competition for the degree course and so, we select students based on marks and an entrance examination. The candidates have to attend a written test, draw a life model and an imaginative sketch too,” BPK principal ‘Sirpi’ M. Jayaraman said.

Started in 1987 in a rented building, the institution has grown into a full-fledged centre with adequate infrastructure and facilities for the students, he said.

BPK offers a four-year course in Bachelor of Visual Arts (BVA) comprising painting, visual communication design and sculpture as the main subjects. The allied subjects included photography, computer graphics, photography, print-making and textile design.

The Bachelor in Performing Arts in Dance (four years) has Bharathanatyam as the main subject, while the Bachelor of Performing Arts in Music comprises vocal, veena, violin and mridangam. Each of these degree courses has 30 seats. “Apart from these, we offer a three-year diploma course in Thavil and Nadaswaram with 10 seats each with the objective of promoting traditional art forms,” Mr. Jayaraman added. The college has started the admission procedure and the last date for submission of applications is July 3.

“The opportunities for the students are plenty. Many of them have joined companies as graphic artists in India and abroad. A number of them have become art directors in the film industry. Our students have participated in national and international-level exhibitions,” he said.

Several students who had completed their degrees in performing arts had established individual institutions to train students. The institution also has students from other States including Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal. “We have good standards of teaching and infrastructure for the courses. But we need more popularity for the courses. The government is taking steps to enhance the job opportunities for the students in Puducherry,” the principal said.

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