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Kalakshetra Foundation

A college of fine arts founded in January 1936 by Rukmini Devi ARUNDALE. It was first located on the property of the Theosophical Society at Adyar in Madras (now Chennai), India.

Kalakshetra means field [or holy place] (kṣetra) of the arts (kalā), hence a holy place of the arts. Its aim, according to the founder, was to revive the ancient culture of India, and further, to build the character of young people through the arts.

In 1962-3 Kalakshetra moved to its own estate of about one hundred acres (40 hectares) situated on the Bay of Bengal where an extensive complex has been built including a theater.

The aims of Kalakshetra have been stated as:

1. The training of artists in the realm of dance, music, painting and crafts.
2. The permeating of general education with the influence of art and culture.
3. The education of public opinion in matters of art and good taste through concerts, public lectures, demonstrations, exhibitions and publications.
4. The encouragement of the very beautiful crafts of India.

A close connection between the Theosophical Society and Kalāshetra is maintained with art education in the Besant Theosophical High School and the Besant Arundale Secondary School.

P.S.H.

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