Maharaja Ram Singh II of Kotah (r.1826-66) at the Gangaur festival
This seems to be an attempt at an unusual kind of portraiture. The Raja appears twice in the picture, on his horse at the bottom left of the picture and in the boat on the river. He is indicated by a halo, as was traditional in Mughal style, and also by a round standard made of peacock feathers. The Raja mounted on a horse appears to be handing out garlands to the women. The scene is the palace at Kotah beside the River Chambal during the Gangaur festival. This is a harvest festival in which women play a prominent part. There are many groups of women dressed in the red saris so popular in Rajasthan. Servants can be seen in the background running to light the wicks of lamps displayed on platforms and there are also lights lining the palace walls. During festivals it is traditional to ride on water in boats and there are several on the Lake. In the water there are fish and turtles swimming. To the right of the Maharaja’s boat is a floating platform carrying the Nautch, or dancing, girls for his amusement. To the right of the palace is another scene of women dancing round the images of Mahadeva and Guari.
Description taken from the ‘Art From The Indian Sub-Continent In The Sainsbury Centre’ catalogue by Margaret A. Willey (Sainsbury Centre, UEA, 1995).
Not on display
Title/Description: Maharaja Ram Singh II of Kotah (r.1826-66) at the Gangaur festival
Born: 1850 c.
Object Type: Drawing
Measurements: Unframed: (h. 459 x w. 664 x d. 1 mm) Framed: (h. 682 x w. 882 x d. 20 mm)
Accession Number: 580
Historic Period: 19th century
School/Style: Indian Miniatures
Credit Line: Donated by Robert and Lisa Sainsbury, 1978