Archive for the Category » Rajput paintings «

Camel Painting

Monday, August 24th, 2009 | Author:

Indian art contains several gems within that did not get their due acclaim. Blame it on other prominent forms of art that were publicized in a better way but nevertheless if we try to find we will come across some true gems in the hinterland of India. One of the hidden and yet impressive forms of art is camel paintings. Surprisingly, camel paintings are in existence since ages. They have always been an integral part of desert cultures in places like Rajasthan. Even the far placed Ancient Samarqand has engraved camel paintings on its walls dating back to 4th century A.D. known as the “ship of the desert”, camel has greatly influenced artistic imagination of the painters in several places. Camels have remained extremely crucial in transferring goods and people through deserts. Camels were primary subject of artists in Ta’ifa monarchies and Umayyad caliphate.


Archeologists have found several places where engravings of camel riders were performed during ancient era. Camels were associated with aristocratic power and pursuits. Rajasthani artists have always relished creating beautiful art works based on camel theme. If we go to Marwar region in the state of Rajasthan, we will find miniature camel paintings. Some of them also include legendary lovers like Dhola-Maru. Camel paintings offer you a mesmerizing world of desert landscapes. They successfully manage to evoke images of arid deserts.


Camels represent tolerance and sustenance and the art works capture those elements beautifully. Rajput Paintings are famous exponents of camel themes. Many Rajputi paintings depict outdoors specially lovers riding camels. Many war scenes are also wonderfully depicted in these paintings. The materials used in these paintings were mainly mineral dyes and vegetables. The primary colors were blue and yellow. 

Rajput paintings

Friday, May 29th, 2009 | Author:

frescoes_samod_palaceThere are many styles of painting that evolved, developed and flourished in the 18th century in the royal courts; one of it being the Rajput paintings. Rajput paintings have tinge and shades of Mughal painting in them along with shadows of Persian miniature painting. In fact, each small kingdom of Rajput had evolved their own distinctive style of painting all of which are classified under the nomenclature Rajput paintings. However, inspite of the distinctive features, there were some common elements in all these paintings that bind them together. Out of the numerous themes that are depicted in these paintings, some of the common themes were description of events from the great epics the Ramayana and the Mahabharata, azure skies and beautiful landscapes, events from the life of lord Krishna, human figures in various dance poses etc. All of these paintings found their place in manuscripts or single sheets that were well preserved. Some of the Rajput paintings can still be seen on walls and chambers of old forts in Jaipur, Jodhpur and Udaipur. Characteristically, the havelis of Shekhawati, the forts and palaces built by Shekhawat Rajputs are a manifestation of the ever enchanting Rajput paintings.


The colours that are used in these Rajput paintings were extracted from certain minerals, from plant shells, from precious stones after processing them, from plant sources etc. A lot of adornment of the paintings was done with gold and silver. The richness and the elegance of these paintings came out through the use of these colours. The strokes of the brush used in these were very fine bringing out the fine detailing done in the paintings. However, painters took a long time in preparing the colours used in this painting because of the elaborate process used in olden days to prepare the paint.


miniature_painting_kotaRajput paintings have a history of around 300 years, beginning from the 16th century, different schools of Rajput painting emerged, during this period; – some of them being notable among them are Mewar School, Jaipur School, Bikaner school, Kishengarh School, Marwar School, Bundi-Kota kalam and Raagamala style of painting.