Born in 1930, P.V. Janakiram graduated from the Government
College of Arts and Crafts, Chennai, with a Diploma in Fine
Arts specializing in Sculpture in the year 1952 and also
received an Honorary Diploma in Sculpture from the
Hungarian Government in 1973.
A student of K.C.S. Paniker and S. Dhanapal, Janakiram was an important member of the Madras Art Movement. When the agenda of nativism in art was propounded by K.C.S. Paniker in the 1960s, the pioneering sculptor S. Dhanapal also initiated a
move towards formulating sculpting practices and creations
based on local folk culture. Janakiram studied the traditional sculpture of the South, the Kavachas was a special point of interest for him and he therefore studied its composition assiduously. Influenced by the traditional temple sculptures of South India, he developed a distinctive idiom, in which he used beaten sheet metal decorated with repousse work to render two-dimensional, frontal portrait sculptures. Janakiram maintained the infusion of indigenous imagery, yet balanced the presence of contemporary art canons and sensibility as well. P.V. Janakiram combined repousse with applique and incorporated wires and cables by welding them to the surface of the final metal creation. He diligently executed interesting shapes on the surface, heavily influence by ingeniously forms.
P.V. Janakiram, along with Dhanaraj Bhagat, were responsible
for popularizing the two-dimensional or "frontal sculpture".
He received National Awards from the Lalit Kala Akademi in
1964 and 1966 respectively, a Silver Medal from the
Hyderabad Art Society in 1965 and the Grand Prix at the 2nd
Biennale at Budapest, Hungary, in 1973. Janakiram`s work is
part of several public collections, such as the National Gallery of Modern Art, New Delhi; the Lalit Kala Akademi, New Delhi; Mahindra & Mahindra, Mumbai; the Government Museum, Chennai; the Punjab Museum, Chandigarh; the Gandhi
Museum, Chennai and the Taj Group of Hotels. The artist
passed away in Chennai, where he lived, in 1995.;