Lot 26
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Tanjore Painting
Late 19th Century

Tamil Nadu

Size: 20 x 16 in (50.8 x 40.6 cm)

Tanjore painting is a unique art tradition that involved painting on a wooden plank using a combination of colour, gold leaves, semi precious stones and glass. The mixed media gives a three-dimensional effect to the work. The tradition fitted very well in ancient Tamil Nadu as the vibrant colours helped brighten up houses which had dark wood interiors.

The quality of a Tanjore painting is determined by various factors like aesthetics, choice of colours, extent of gold used, number of stones, subject etc.

This is an outstanding Tanjore painting that shows Krishna, the God of Love, flanked by his beautiful wives, Rukmini and Satyabhama. Handsome Krishna is shown wearing a cream coloured dhoti with a broad, gold embroidered kamar-patta. He wears multiple stone-studded gold necklaces, a choker with a pendant, ornate gold armbands, wristbands, large earrings and lovely head decorations with a peacock feather on top. His round smiling face and loving eyes exude warmth. Both Satyabhama and Rukmini wear saris, well pleated in the front and beautifully draped. Both his wives are richly bejeweled with gold necklaces, bangles, earrings and gold hair decorations. They also wear anklets of gold. All of them are seen standing within an arched, scalloped doorway. The work on both upper corners of the doorway is in gold, rich and majestic. The background is the original indigo blue colour that is typically seen in old Tanjore paintings. All the colours used are bright and lively and the facial features are wonderful and divine.

The artist has shown Krishna embracing one of his wives with his left hand and feeding her a ball of butter with his right. The other wife stands slightly distanced with the finger of her right hand on her chin. In all probability the objective could be to show Krishna standing closer to Rukmini, his favourite wife, with Satyabhama slightly distanced. The painting has a lovely colour tone with the white marble-like colour of Krishna's body accentuating the beauty. The entire painting has a dream like smoky effect that befits the romantic subject. This is indeed a fine example of the ancient Tanjore tradition.

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  Lot 26 of 55  

25-26 APRIL 2012

$4,000 - 6,000

Winning Bid
(Inclusive of Buyer's Premium)

Krishna, Satyabhama, Rukmini


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