Vaikuntam was born in 1942 in Andhra Pradesh. He studied at the College of Fine Arts and Architecture in Hyderabad. In 1971, he won the Lalit Kala Akademi Fellowship to study at the M.S. University, Baroda. He has had several solo and group shows internationally and in India, including New Delhi, Mumbai and cities in South India. His recent solo shows include the 2011 ‘Metamorphosis: The Changing World of Thota Vaikuntam’ at the Art Alive Gallery in New Delhi, as well as the 2011 ‘Memoire du passe 1979-1999’ at the Latitude 28 gallery, New Delhi. His works have also been exhibited in New York, London, Birmingham and Kassel. His work was shown at the VII Triennale, New Delhi, and he has also exhibited with Saffronart in Los Angeles and Hong Kong in 2001. Vaikuntam won the Bharat Bhavan Biennale Award, Bhopal in 1988, as well as the National Award for Painting from the Government of India in 1993. The artist lives and works in Hyderabad.