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The month of Kartika. October/November

  • Object type

  • Museum number

    1999,1202,0.5.3

  • Title (object)

    • The month of Kartika. October/November
  • Description

    One of a series of eight paintings bound in an album. The series are from a 'Baramasa' set or 'Songs of the seasons' providing visual imagery for Baramasa poetry. The main theme is that of nayakas' and nayikas' (lovers) love in union and in separation and their relationship with the months of the year.

    Radha and Krishna stand on a white terraced pavilion in a house lit with oil lamps indicating the celebration of the festival of Diwali. The black sky studded with stars, and nearby town lit with lamps (on which they gaze) indicate a night scene. Radha and Krishna are shown again in the same architectural setting in a room playing a board game that looks like chess. Radha is seen making a move while lady musicians entertain the couple. Gambling at Diwali is a ritual in order to propitiate Lakshmi, Goddess of Wealth. Another couple are seen in miniature in the foreground playing chaupar, a popular game. In the foreground ladies bathe in a lotus filled pool before a shrine housing a linga and yoni, emblem of Śiva and Parvati. The lush foliage of the trees and exuberant flowering creepers separate the pavilion from the gaily lit town seen in the far distance.

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  • School/style

  • Date

    • 1675-1700 (circa)
  • Production place

  • Technique

  • Dimensions

    • Height: 30.5 centimetres (page)
    • Width: 21.6 centimetres
    • Height: 21.2 centimetres (painting including black and white margins)
    • Width: 17.3 centimetres
  • Inscriptions

      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Script

        Devanagiri
      • Inscription Position

        top
      • Inscription Language

        braj bhasa
      • Inscription Translation

        Woods, gardens, rivers, earth and sky are clear and shine brightly, illuminated by small oil lamps used during the festival of Diwali. Days and nights are joyous with the festivities; couples gamble. Walls and courtyards of every house are decorated with colourful paintings of Gods and Goddesses. Celestial light pervades the entire Universe and all men and women have love in their hearts. This is the month whereby religious merit can be earned by performing sacred baths, giving alms to the poor and worshipping God. Keshavdas says that the nayika implores her lover not to leave in the month of Kartika.
      • Inscription Comment

        Poetry on Baramasa by Keshavdas of Orccha. Translation taken from Dwivedi, V.P., 'Barahmasa. The Song of Seasons in Literature and Art.' 1980.
      • Inscription Type

        inscription
      • Inscription Position

        front page
      • Inscription Content

        Album no.10
  • Curator's comments

    This series seems to be drawn, composed and coloured by one artist and is so similar to a Bundi Baramasa painting in Pal, P. 'Dancing to the Flute', p.88, as to suggest them belonging to the same series. The similarity in foliage depiction, architectural details such as the predominant use of white and green, patterning on walls and rooftops, Krishna's face presenting a distinctive profile with large Bundi eye and prominent nose in all paintings in this series point to the hand of one master artist. Krishna's crown on top of an orange turban is present in all of the paintings including the one in Pal, '97, which further corroborates these belonging to the same series. This early Bundi series has a vibrant spirit that is imparted by the interplay of brilliant colours, intense emotional cross currents between the lovers that convey the bhakti or devotion of the times, and a lyricism that makes the paintings come alive. The emphasis on diagonal lines impart movement; the lush vegetation and sensuous figures all contribute to the dynamic vibrancy of these works. The figures are modelled and shaded after Mughal painting to impart volume.

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  • Bibliography

    • Pal 1993 bibliographic details
    • Blurton 2006 pp.31-33 bibliographic details
  • Conservation

    See treatments 

  • Subjects

  • Associated titles

    • Associated Title: Baramasa
    • Associated Title: Songs of the Seasons
  • Acquisition name

  • Acquisition date

    1999

  • Department

    Asia

  • Registration number

    1999,1202,0.5.3

One of a series of eight paintings bound in an album. The series are from a 'Baramasa' set or 'Songs of the seasons' providing visual imagery for Baramasa poetry. The main theme is that of nayakas' and nayikas' (lovers) love in union and in separation and their relationship with the months of the year.

Radha and Krishna stand on a white terraced pavilion in a house lit with oil lamps indicating the celebration of the festival of Diwali. The black sky studded with stars, and nearby town lit with lamps (on which they gaze) indicate a night scene. Radha and Krishna are shown again in the same architectural setting in a room playing a board game that looks like chess. Radha is seen making a move while lady musicians entertain the couple. Gambling at Diwali is a ritual in order to propitiate Lakshmi, Goddess of Wealth. Another couple are seen in miniature in the foreground playing chaupar, a popular game. In the foreground ladies bathe in a lotus filled pool before a shrine housing a linga and yoni, emblem of Siva and Parvati. The lush foliage of the trees and exuberant flowering creepers separate the pavilion from the gaily lit town seen in the far distance.

One of a series of eight paintings bound in an album. The series are from a 'Baramasa' set or 'Songs of the seasons' providing visual imagery for Baramasa poetry. The main theme is that of nayakas' and nayikas' (lovers) love in union and in separation and their relationship with the months of the year. Radha and Krishna stand on a white terraced pavilion in a house lit with oil lamps indicating the celebration of the festival of Diwali. The black sky studded with stars, and nearby town lit with lamps (on which they gaze) indicate a night scene. Radha and Krishna are shown again in the same architectural setting in a room playing a board game that looks like chess. Radha is seen making a move while lady musicians entertain the couple. Gambling at Diwali is a ritual in order to propitiate Lakshmi, Goddess of Wealth. Another couple are seen in miniature in the foreground playing chaupar, a popular game. In the foreground ladies bathe in a lotus filled pool before a shrine housing a linga and yoni, emblem of Siva and Parvati. The lush foliage of the trees and exuberant flowering creepers separate the pavilion from the gaily lit town seen in the far distance.

Image description

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Object reference number: RFI35240

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