Kesav earned a Graduate Diploma in Painting, from College of Fine Arts, Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, Hyderabad and a Post Graduate Diploma in Graphic Arts from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda
Kesav has mastered the techniques of print-making, charcoal on paper, oil on canvas and natural dyes on fabric. His themes vary but always convey his deep respect and love for the common people of India. He challenges the viewer to reflect and explore his/her own interpretation of what is depicted.
Kesav has had many exhibitions in galleries across India and internationally including the solo exhibitions "Demo-Cry" at the Lalit Kala Akademi (National Academy of Fine Arts, Delhi;" "Freedom is Not Free" at the Kalahita Art Foundation, Hyderabad; and a touring exhibition "On the Serrated Road - Bapu" depicting Gandhi's critical role in India's freedom struggle - his South African phase; his role in uniting India's varied political factions, religious and ethnic groups; the mobilization of the masses with courageous passive resistance techniques that ultimately led to India's achieving independence from the British; and finally, his later days till the time of his death.
"Demo-Cry", exhibited in Delhi in March 2014, is a series of mostly black and white charcoal drawings on paper. Each work is a narrative, containing a story or an important event from the life of India's common people who have been, and continue to be, impacted by prejudices, ethnic conflicts and violence.
From a review in Buzz-in-Town: "Agitated and frustrated urban masses clash and protest ill doings of civil administrations. Corruption growing strong, economy growing weak, neglected agriculture, illiteracy, child labor, scams, ignorance and indifference are the fodder for hiswork. "Demo- Cry" captures the endless neglect and apathy that has left the nation in tatters. "Demo-Cry" is representative of the phenomenon of insecurity of human life. The artist's brush has been successful in capturing the problems of the poor and the middle class in a developing nation like India. The mere presence of these groups in the paintings are capable of arousing a spectrum of emotions ranging from pity to love and acknowledgement to guilt. The initial fleeting acknowledgement of them can lead to the arousal of guilt in the heart of the sensitive. The representations lead to reminiscence of the archetypal redemption of sin on the hands of 'one' for the 'better-halves' in society. It becomes a moral dilemma for the viewer when he is lost in the question of whether the force shown in the art work is over or under exploited. Whereas they seem to be weighed down with the burdens of life and past experiences, the hidden energy in the figures yearn for adequate utilization of the resources they are capable of offering. Life for them is rife with degradation of all kinds from physical to mental to possibly spiritual. What is worth notice is that despite the 'diversity' prevalent in the country it is poverty that 'unites' people into a separate community.
Kesav's - Web Site -
Critical Reviews on Kesav's Gandhi series "Bapu on the Serrated Road"
Video Interview of Kesav on his Gandhi paintings