The present College of Fine Arts has a history of more than 100 years even though it changed its name and belonging many times.
Founded in1881 by the then king of Travancore His Highness Visakham Thirunal Rama Varma as His Highness Maharajas School of Arts. Later on in the 20th century, administration of the school was transferred to The University of Travancore. In 1957 after the formation of first democratically elected government in Kerala, the School of Arts was brought under the Directorate of Technical Education. In 1975 the school was upgraded as the College of Fine Arts and got affiliated to the University of Kerala. From 1979 onwards the college started Bachelor of Fine Arts (BFA) courses in three disciplines - Painting, Sculpture and Applied Art. In the year 2001 the college celebrated its Silver Jubilee Year with exhibitions, seminars and workshops.
Over the years a number of distinguished artists and art educators of the country have nurtured the college. Veteran artists and scholars like the late K. K. Hebbar, the late N. S. Bendre, Prof. Gulam Sheikh and Prof. Hanumante visited the institute and inspired and students..
Currently the college is under both the Kerala University (for examination) and Directorate of Technical Education (for administration). The college over the years has produced some of the finest painters, sculptors and designers many of whom are internationally renowned artists today in their own right.
The college offers Bachelor of fine Arts (BFA) courses broadly in three disciplines Painting, Sculpture and Applied Art. Duration of the course is 4 y ears, after the completion of 4 years students have to appear for the examination conducted by The University