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Vasudev: He exposed me to the best of literature

The New Indian Express logo The New Indian Express 11-06-2019 S G Vasudev
a man looking at the camera © Provided by The New Indian Express

I met Girish Karnad, for the first time, in 1963 in Chennai. Late YN Krishnamurthy, editor of Prajavani and Kannada Prabha, brought him to meet me. I was studying at the College of Arts and Crafts, Chennai, at that time. We became good friends. He exposed me to the best of literature, introduced me to great writers like A K Ramanujan, U R Ananthamurthy, Chandrashekhara Kambara, B V Karanth and others. He got me to put up an exhibition of my artworks in Dharwad in 1967, where I met great Kannada poet D R Bendre.

Girish was closely connected with the art and artists of Chennai, both at the College of Arts and the Cholamandal Artists’ Village, where I had made my home and studio. I got involved with amateur theatre group ‘The Madras Players’ through him. We worked on the award-winning Kannada films ‘Samskara’ and ‘Vamsha Vriksha’. Girish was a good artist, and also played the tabla.

I moved to Bengaluru in 1988 with my son, after my artist wife Arnawaz passed away. Girish knew her well and made a documentary on her. He moved to Bengaluru in 1990 with his family. It was not just friends but families who knitted together. I have lost a good friend who inspired my life.

The writer is an award-winning painter

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