One of India's finest, interdisciplinary artists Vivan Sundaram breathes his last on Wednesday at the age of 79.
In the past few months, Sundaram was ailing with multiple health issues, reported his friend and social activist Shabnam Hashmi.
“Vivan Sundaram passed away this morning at 9.20 am. Further details of the cremation as decided will be communicated to you shortly,” read a note issued by Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust (SAHMAT), of which Sundaram was a founding trustee.
Born in Shimla in 1943 to parents Kalyan Sundaram, former chairman of the Law Commission of India, and Indira Sher-Gil, sister of noted Indian modern artist Amrita Sher-Gil, the Delhi-based artist worked with various mediums including painting, installation of artwork, video work, photography and so on. He studied painting at the Faculty of Fine Arts, M.S. University of Baroda (1961–65) and at the Slade School of Art, London (1966–68) where he also studied History of Cinema.
Sundaram's works have been exhibited in the Biennials of Kochi (2012), Sydney (2008), Seville (2006), Taipei (2006), Sharjah (2005), Shanghai (2004), Havana (1997), Johannesburg (1997) and Kwangju (1997).
"Extremely sad to share that Vivan Sundaram has passed on. He was one of the finest artists, and activists I have known for over 35 years. His demise is a big loss to the art world and also to the creative cultural resistance. He was a rare person, generated extremely interesting ideas, meticulously planned them and worked round the clock to implement them. I have worked with many artists but have not met anyone like Vivan. He would fight like hell for what he thought was right but was an extremely gentle person on the other hand. It is a huge personal loss as well. My deepest condolences to Geeta & Anuradha Kapoor and to all his family members and friends," wrote Hashmi in a Facebook post.