For The Love Of Art – George J Thaliath’s Museum

The Kerala folklore Museum is an amazing reflection of history, art, traditions and culture 

Art is a beautiful form of expression – it can be feelings, thoughts, perceptions or just the essence of a fleeting moment. Though it has been engraved across all cultures in their history, tradition and architecture, very often, these priceless masterpieces are taken for granted. RITZ explores exquisite collections of an art enthusiast from Kochi for whom art is a passion and though collecting art is an expensive hobby, he continues to nurture it for the sheer love of art!

Words: Riya Sonny Datson

Photography: Arun A Menon


George J Thaliath

‘Labour of Love’ is how he chooses to describe his passion. “Art is life” says George J Thaliath, who firmly believes that art is a result of deep spirituality, passion and respect towards life and humanity. The Kerala Folklore Museum, his second home, is the fruit of forty years of consistent research, in-depth studies and extensive travel across India. The Museum that has over 7000 ethnic artefacts in wood, metal and stone, including paintings, sculptures, statues, costumes, jewellery, masks, carvings and much more is a treasure trove of history, culture, art and creativity. “Art is to be preserved so that the future generations are aware about the immense value of our rich culture, heritage and traditions,” he says. His wife, Annie and children, Jacob and Elsa are also very involved and supportive of his endeavour. George is the author of ‘FACE’ (Folkart And Cultural Expressions) which is literally an exhaustive encyclopaedia of Indian Folkart!

  • Art Trigger: It’s instinctive, when you see an art piece that you desire, it will arouse your spirit!
  • Favourite Collection: Tribal art and Folk art
  • Treasured Possession: Every single piece here is my treasure
  • Achievement: His Museum has India’s biggest collection of tribal ‘Masks’
  • Ambition: Preserving art, instilling knowledge and respect for art among the younger generation
  • On the Wish-list: I would love to build a museum bigger than the Salar Jung Museum!