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Ladies Bathing in a Garden, miniature, Bharat, Punjab Hills, Guler, India               

Collection: Artworld: Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts       

Date: 1750-1775 CE       

Description: A lady sits on the edge of a lotus pool listening to her confidante while three of the their companions sport in the water. In the background, a maid fans the bed in a thatched pavilion near a row of trees. The picture is framed in an oval with white spandrels.       

Description Source Robert Skelton. In: Steven Hooper (ed.). 1997. Catalogue to the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection. University of East Anglia.                 

Id Number Current Accession 874                

Measurements 85 x 155 x 1 mm                 


“This theme of ladies bathing appears to have been popular among Guler artists, whose naturalistic treatment of the female form owes much to Mughal painting. In the present example this influence is transcended by the idealisation and graceful charm of the principal figure.

An early version of the composition, dominated by the oblique angle of the pool’s edge, is found in a painting from an album of Shah Jahan’s reign in the Chester Beatty Library, Dublin (MS 7B, no. 38), which also includes a prototype of the detail of the girl shown splashing her companion in the foreground. A more developed version of the basic compositional structure by a Guler artist is in the Victoria and Albert Museum (Archer, 1973: II: 110, no. 42). The two principal figures stem from the same design as a painting in the Punjab Museum (Khandalavala, 1958, study supplement no. 127; see also supplement no. 218 for another version of the general composition).”   Source Robert Skelton. In: Steven Hooper (ed.). 1997. Catalogue to the Robert and Lisa Sainsbury Collection. University of East Anglia.   Rights Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, UEA, Norwich, 2002.  All Rights reserved



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