Miniature Paintings of India Rajasthan

Rajasthani Miniature Paintings

The elegant Rajasthani Miniature Paintings are well known far and wide. This art form dates back to the 6th – 7th century when Kashmiri paintings also became popular. The connoisseurs love to see these small paintings in sparking colors obtained from vegetables. The canvass of a these paintings were beautiful riot of colors with varied themes. Miniature paintings are remarkable for the intricate work and dexterity involved while making them.

History: They are called miniature because they are comparatively smaller yet beautiful. During 11th and 12th century the tradition of Miniature paintings flourished. Such paintings were used by people to make manuscripts in those times. These manuscripts were helpful in storing knowledge on palm leaves. In the later centuries Mughals patronized these arts greatly. The stunning miniature paintings were inspired from epics and folk themes.

Different cultures influenced the art of paintings and so it is an amalgamation of varied cultures. Adapted many a times, the art has been greatly appreciated by its patrons. A great impetus had been the Mughals, Rajputs boosted by manuscripts of Jains and Buddhists. Monarchs of mighty Mughals and royal Rajputs highly encouraged this art.

Different Themes of Miniature Paintings : They are a personification of themes, plots and motifs. These paintings are marked with gentle strokes of brush, use of colors made from minerals, vegetables, conch shells, precious stones, indigo, pure gold and silver. Much of the artisan’s time was spent in making that perfect color that could give an aesthetic value to the magnum opuses.

The thematic extravaganza of these paintings draw inspiration from evered epics of India like Ramayana, Mahabharata, Bhagvata Purana, Rasikpriya, Rasamanjiri as well as ragas of Indian classical music. Also worth mentioning are the texts and doctrines of Jains, Buddhists, Rajput and Mughals that are all replete with these beautiful paintings. the scenes of courts, hunting episodes, flowers and animals like elephants and horses are another important features.

Different Schools of Miniature Paintings

Rajasthan is the main center of this art and even today regions of Jodhpur, Jaipur, Mughal, Kangra and Mewar nurture the art schools of miniature paintings. The two important school of the art are the Mughal School and Rajput School. While Mughal school is marked by moderate and muted colors to give depth, the Rajput have expertise in using exotic vibrant shades to make it more gaudy an flashy.

The reign of Jehangir made this art more and more popular with increasing degree of intricacy and grace. The Rajput school of art use Krishna Legends theme. Radha Krishna, Dhola Maru on a camel’s back are the prominent themes of the Rajput School.

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