20 October, 2020

Small Insights

This profusely-illustrated coffeetabler is a guided tour of an interesting—if uneven—collection of over 200 works in various styles

Small Insights
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
Many Pahari painters migrated to the court of Ranjit Singh in the 19th century. They started to function in Amritsar, Lahore and Patiala giving rise to a genre of painting based on the lives and exploits of the Sikh gurus. This profusely-illustrated coffeetabler is a guided tour of an interesting—if uneven—collection of over 200 works in various styles from Arpana Caur’s Fine Arts Miniature Museum.

The Sikh paintings consist mainly of pages from the Janam Sakhi or life of Guru Nanak. These are almost naif, illustrative narrative paintings in a folksy style. Of great charm is a painting of Guru Nanak dancing in a frenzy of spiritual ecstasy. Also interesting are the series of drawings using the technique of the Khakka or perforated stencil to reproduce the image on paper, a technique that’s still used to transfer drawings on to wet plaster in the making of frescoes. An unusual drawing from this set shows Bahadur Shah Zafar and Ranjit Singh suspended side by side in a pair of teardrop frames.

The book also includes a Pahari...

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