He is considered among the greatest painters in the history of Indian art. His works are one of the best examples of the fusion of European academic art with a purely Indian sensibility and iconography. Additionally, he was notable for making affordable lithographs of his paintings available to the public.
Raja Ravi Varma was born in Kilimanoor Palace, formerly the princess of Travancore, the present state of India, Kerala, to an aristocratic family. The title Raja was awarded as a personal title by Viceroy and the Governor General of India.