An artist helping a technician to achieve his dreams is the most beautiful thing. RajaRavi Varma is the father of Indian Art. He gave a face to Indian gods whom we are bowing down and praying now. He was the first commercial artist who brought gods, goddesses, and many mythological characters out of temples, books, and museums. Among his paintings ” Saraswati” and “Lakshmi” are the most sold printings around India.
Printing Press Establishment
Actually, the story commenced here, RajaRavi Varma started a lithographic printing press in Maharashtra in 1894, and then after in 1899 he partnered with local Businessman Govardhan Das taking into the next level. That printing machinery is imported from Germany.
So, here Dhundiraj Govind Phalke popularly known as Dadasaheb Phalke started his carrier as a trainee under RajaRavi Varma. He started as a trainee, Dadasaheb studied sculpture, Drawing, Painting & Photography. Before that he used to work as a small-time Photographer in Godhra, Gujarat.
As RajaRavivarma is from Art family, he doesn’t know much about the business many printing presses have opened at that time and most of them have copied his work and made many printings of god’s, mythological characters and sold to people. Here, he saw downfall for the printing press, and Unfortunately, Bubonic Plague(1894-1901) has spread all over India at that time that claimed over millions of lives. Dadasaheb lost his first wife and Raja Ravi Varma has lost his brother RajaRaja Varma who stood with his highs and lows till the end. So, at that time his lithographic printing press occurred huge loss and he sold to the German Company that supplied machinery.
According to the sources, Rajaravi Varma gave 2/3 of his money to Dadasaheb Phalke to achieve his dream by making a film. In the year 1906, Rajaravi Varma has passed away and Dadasaheb Phalke has studied and researched about the film making process. He brought many materials which are used to make a film from abroad.
Start of Indian Cinema
Dadasaheb Phalke was inspired by watching the movie ” The life of Christ” french silent film based on the Bible. His words are ” While the life of Christ was rolling before my eyes I was mentally visualizing the gods Shri Krishna, Shri Ram, Gokul & Ayodhya. Could we, the Sons of India, ever able to see Indian images on Screen? “.
In 1913, Dadasaheb made a film titled ” Raja Harishchandra” which is the first Indian Silent Feature Film. Later on, he made 95 full-length future films and 27 Short Films. When he got an opportunity to go to London and make a film, he refused it and said: ” I have to make films in my Country so that it gets established as an Industry at Home”.
They both have played an important role in our Indian art. Many artists and filmmakers are exploring now with their talent and the great Dadasaheb Phalke awards are started in 1969.