In oil on canvas paintings both intricately detailed and beautifully executed, Indian artist Shyamala Rao depicts the exotic animals and birds from Africa, Asia, North America, and South America in an accessible and intimate manner, allowing the viewer to come face to face with these magnificent beings from around the world. Growing up in a strongly Hindu society in India, Rao was taught great respect for other forms of life, and her work reflects this sensibility. Her paintings are both figurative and expressive, capturing the complexity of each animal’s spirit in form, line, tone, and hue. As Rao explains, “My work is a homage to nature, a celebration of all forms of life. It is also a means to do my part to protect them.” In the end, she hopes that her paintings will inspire viewers to guard our wildlife heritage, to create a world in which humans and animals can coexist in harmony.
Shyamala Rao currently lives and works in San Antonio, Texas.