R. Nandakumar is an art historian and culture critic with a specific focus on cultural musicology. He has taught art history in various Fine Arts colleges and has been Professor and Head of the Department of Visual Arts, Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts (IGNCA), New Delhi. Formerly a Fellow of the Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, he has currently been Senior Nehru Fellow at Nehru Memorial Museum and Library, Teen Murti Bhawan, New Delhi. His critique of the tantric style published in Malayalam in the early eighties is one of the early attempts to look at the historical premises of the ideology of Indianness and to problematise the tradition/modernity binary in the context of art and nationalism. His several papers on Raja Ravi Varma are widely cited in art historical circles. His extensive application of Lacanian concepts to the study of a contemporary south Indian artist’s oeuvre is among the very few such art-historical attempts. His writings address areas of interdisciplinary concern with an accent on the sociology of culture and have appeared in important academic journals.