- Museum number
- Object: The month of Vaisakh. April/may.
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.
Spring, a time for love in union is symbolically depicted by showing Kama the God of Love, perched atop a lush green forest, taking aim with his bow and arrow at Krishna and Radha seated in a pavilion to the left of the illustration. Radha echoes Keshav's verses by pointing to Kama --"the arrows of Kama are hard to bear in separation"-- while entreating Krishna not to leave. Travellers are seen in the foreground, some walking some in a boat on a river. To the right of the picture plane ladies perform pūjā under a tree, symbol of fertility, as it is the spring season. Two peasants draw water from the river with the help of bullocks harnessed to a device. A pink brick zigzagging wall separates the painting vertically, a departure from the usual convention of horizontal demarcation.
- Production date
- 1675-1700 (circa)
Height: 30.20 centimetres (page)
Height: 25.20 centimetres (painting including black and white margins)
Width: 17.60 centimetres
Width: 22 centimetres
- 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.
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
2007 Aug-Nov, London, The British Museum, Faith, Narrative and Desire.
- Associated titles
Associated Title: Baramasa (Songs of the Seasons)
- Acquisition date
- Registration number