The Frenetic and Bold Style from the Kingdom of Mewar

The kingdom of Mewar has a long and complicated history with origins rooted in myth, combining legend and fact into an amalgam of information that obscures both. Once a strong independent nation, they eventually submitted to Mughal rule by 1615, later falling under British domain when Maharana Bhim Singh entered into a treaty with them in 1810. Throughout constant social and political fluctuation, Mewari artists solidified themselves as the greatest painters in Rajasthan, formulating a distinct style that included simultaneous narrative, vibrant reds and yellows, and bold lines contrasting figures within each scene. This exhibition presents a variety of Mewari paintings ranging from the 17th to 19th centuries, highlighting the skill and creativity the region’s ateliers were endowed with.

Maharana Bhim Singh, India, Mewar, c. 19th century, gouache and gold on paper, 11 1/2 x 9 7/8 in. (29.2 x 25.1 cm.)

Leaf from a Panchakhyana Series, India, Mewar, c. 18th century, gouache and gold on paper, 13 x 10 3/8 in. (33 x 26.5 cm.)

Illustration to Book Two of the Tulsi Ramayana: Rama and Lakshmana Studying at a Hermitage, India, Mewar, c. 1700-1710, gouache and gold on paper, 10 1/4 x 15 7/8 in. (26 x 40.3 cm.)

A Maharana Aims an Arrow at a Leaping Tiger, India, Mewar, c. 1750, gouache and gold on paper, 8 1/4 x 12 7/8 in. (21 x 32.7 cm.)

Link to article in the New York Times

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