While Ram Kumar's Banaras landscapes are on the one hand dramatically different from his early figurative works, the underlying philosophies and thematic concerns remain the same. His first trip to the Eternal City in 1960 left a deep impression on him which has manifested itself consistently in his work over the last four decades. With his visit to Banaras, the focus of his work changed "from the person in society to the physical environment in which society had to manifest itself..." In this way, Banaras to Ram Kumar, epitomizes man's "identification with absolute nature." Man may pass away, but nature, both human and physical, remains and does not change. (Richard Bartholomew, 'Attitudes to the Social Condition: Notes on Ram Kumar', Lalit Kala Contemporary 24-25, New Delhi, 1981, p. 33.)
His works combine the "...abstract predicament of man and the human and tactile feel of the living landscape." (Richard Bartholomew, 'The Abstract Principle in the Paintings of Ram Kumar', Lalit Kala Contemporary 19 & 20, New Delhi, 1975, p. 12.) In recent works from the 1990's onwards, architecture previously absent from his Banaras landscapes begin to re-appear. The city is identifiable and regains its unique identity on the canvas through the placement of buildings and structures along the flanks of the river and ghats beyond.