Gouache painting on paper from a set of eight paintings of deities and processional scenes. Gaṇeśa seated on his mount the rat, flanked by two 'ganas' (or 'bhutas' as named in the inscription). He holds his four attributes, one in each hand: the 'pasha' and 'ankusha' in his upper hands, and the broken tusk and the 'laddu' in his lower hands.
- Painted in: Thanjavur
- (Asia,South Asia,India,Tamil Nadu,Thanjavur District,Thanjavur)
- Height: 29.7 centimetres
- Width: 20.5 centimetres
Inscription Positionpasted to the mount
Inscription ContentVinayaca Mushica Vahanah. Vinayaca a Ganesha borne by the Large Indian Rat (vul: Bandicoot) and attended by the Bhutas
The layout of the paintings resemble the large so-called 'Thanjavur' paintings which hang in private puja rooms and in the meeting halls of religious institutions.
When this collection was originally acquired, eight paintings in a distinctly Tanjore style (1974,0617,0.14.1-8) were bound together with a collection of thirty paintings (1974,0617,0.14.9-38) that appear to be of a style associated with Maharashtra. The paintings have since all been removed from this binding.
1990 20 Oct-9 Dec, Japan, Tokyo, Setagaya Art Museum, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.150
1991 5 Jan-20 Feb, Japan, Yamaguchi, Prefectural Museum of Art, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.150
1991 9 Mar-7 May, Japan, Osaka, National Museum of Art, Treasures of the British Museum, cat. no.150
3 January 2104
Reason for treatment
Consolidate fragile pigments.
Some planar distortion yet this is protected by the deep mount and to be expected with such a thick layer of pigment. Also some old repairs/residues on the verso naturally contribute to this.Verso shows previous insect damage to the lining yet stable. Pigments in the central part of the painting appear stable, yet there are existing pigment losses and fragile pigments on the painted border areas, especially at the corners. These areas appear to have been consolidated previously, judging from glue residues on the surface and the positioning of some pigment fragments. Along the LH edge there is a division in the substrate that shows further pigment loss and fragile areas.
Areas showing vulnerable pigments were pre-wetted with 40% IMS and then consolidated by inserting strained 2% isinglass mixed with 5% methylcellulose into the cracks, before pressing. Examination under magnification revealed the pigments on the left-hand edge to be much more vulnerable than previously detected, most probably due to the pigments in this area being painted on a thinner substrate than the rest of the painting. These areas were treated further in the same manner. The inlay of the painting was then hinged down to prevent viewers from flexing the sheet and destabilising the pigments further. Photographs of both the verso and inscription (which are now obscured by this hinging) are attached.
Transferred from the Department of Oriental Manuscripts and Printed Books (OMPB).
If you’ve noticed a mistake or have any further information about this object, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Object reference number: RFI2089
British Museum collection data is also available in the W3C open data standard, RDF, allowing it to join and relate to a growing body of linked data published by organisations around the world.
The Museum makes its collection database available to be used by scholars around the world. Donations will help support curatorial, documentation and digitisation projects.