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Raghupati Bhat

Raghupati Bhat


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Shri Raghupati Bhat, or Ganjifa Raghupati Bhat, as he is popularly known, belongs to Udupi. His fascination for paintings and Indian culture were all a part of his upbringing. Bhat was inspired to take up the Ganjifa as a form of miniature painting where he would draw broadly per the sacred texts. Before he took up the Ganjifa work, he was into a series of paintings of gods and demons. Much of Bhat’s artistic career has been spent in the revival of the traditional art of Ganjifa. While he paints with the traditional style, Bhat’s works are not mere reproductions of archetypal images. He gets his ideas from research and literary classics, and if needed, he discusses with experts who precede most of his artistic attempts. He recreates ancient themes in a contemporary way, based on his own understanding of mythology. Raghupati’s deep fascination with Ganjifa led him to collect old Ganjifas and setting up Chitra Sale, which is a museum dedicated to Ganjifa art in Srirangapatana. Sadly, the museum was later closed.