Mrinalini was the wife of Artist Namboothiri, an iconic illustrator and sculptor from Kerala who died on July 7, 2023. As his support and source of motivation during his long and distinguished career as an illustrator/sculptor/illustrator/sculpor she provided constant support and inspiration.
Early Life and Education
Mrinalini was born into a Brahmin family in Kerala. She had a traditional upbringing, learning Sanskrit and Ayurveda before marrying Artist Namboothiri of Karuvatta Mana Vasudevan Namboothiri fame while attending painting classes at Chennai Fine Arts College; later they settled down in Malappuram district near Naduvattam in Naduvattam together.
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Family and Children
Mrinalini and Artist Namboothiri had two sons, Parameswaran and Vasudevan, who carried on his artistic legacy as artists themselves – Parameswaran as painter/sculptor and Vasudevan as writer/journalist respectively. Both sons have four grandchildren and two great-grandchildren each, which Mrinalini doted upon and nurtured over her lifetime.
Support for Husband’s Art
Mrinalini preferred to let her husband’s art speak for itself, rarely accompanying him to public events or interviews, yet was always proud of his achievements and awards. She encouraged his pursuit of line art and copper relief works that brought to life many characters from Malayalam literature and culture; in turn she provided vital assistance with collecting materials, prepping canvases, and organizing exhibitions for his projects.
Last Days and Death
Mrinalini was at her husband’s bedside until his final breath at Kottakkal Aster Mims Hospital, where he was being treated for age-related ailments. Their sons and other family members bid him farewell with tears in their eyes as his body lay at Naduvattom house for public homage before it was taken to Lalithakala Akademi in Thrissur before finally being cremated at its ancestral site in Naduvattom.
Mrinalini now carries with her memories and the legacy of her late husband’s line art and copper relief work that immortalized iconic scenes and characters from Malayalam literature and culture. Additionally, her legacy will continue to inspire generations of artists and readers.
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