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Paintings > Mughal > Ladies at a Cloth-shop
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Ladies at a Cloth-shop

Ladies at a Cloth-shop

Ladies at a Cloth-shop

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Watercolor Painting On Paper
Artist: Navneet Parikh

10.3 inches X 13.3 inches
Item Code:
MJ19
Frame
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$380.00   Shipping Free - 4 to 6 days
This item can be back ordered
Time required to recreate this artwork: 6 to 8 weeks
Advance to be paid now (% of product value): 20%
Balance to be paid once product is ready: 80%
The amount to be tendered as advance to back order this artwork: $76.00
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Viewed 7718 times since 2nd Jun, 2010
This painting, portraying a shop-keeper, one of the new upcoming classes of society finding a place in mid-nineteenth century art and literature, a renaissance scenario, which the rise of common man characterised, is an excellent work of art rendered in Provincial Mughal style of miniature art as it prevailed at centres like Oudh around 1830-40 A.D. It combined with Mughals’ sophistication, fine details, maturity of form, perfection in execution, sense of perspective, and aesthetic levels, that is, the Mughals’ overall classicism, local traditions and themes from beyond the court. In containing its main theme in a series of embellished spaces, not merely a gorgeous border comprising uniformly rendered arabesques drawn in gold against a background in gold’s own deeper tint, or another, an inner one, comprising a series of variedly coloured lines, but also the architecture-type – shop’s sides’ planks, face, deep brownish foreground and golden elevation – all creating the perspective of depth for the principal figures, the painting essentially has a Mughal character.

Not like these days’ showrooms or departmental stores and their pump and show, with its fine and expensive selection, put on display or stored in shelves, shop’s rich but elegant elevation, and with a wealthy trader being its owner, the shop appears to be a standard one visited mostly by class gentry – feudatory, landlords and other elite, something which the two women’s jewellery, attire, ways, and even appearance, also suggest. They are essentially from society’s upper strata. The painting portrays them as engaged in shopping. They have displayed before them a number of odhanis’ type printed textiles having zari borders. One on the shop’s inner side is explaining to the shopkeeper the type of cloth she wants, and as suggests the demeanour of the shopkeeper’s face, his mind is occupied in thinking which piece shall suit her choice and he should show.

The shop’s ambience, architecture and entire character reveal a kind of Mughal India’s medievalism. All textiles, put on display or stored in shelves, are feminine wears, with no male clothing being discernible in the entire collection. A medieval shop pursuing Mughal model could be a shop either fully for male wears or for female. Forts and palace enclosures usually had a bazaar complex, and in it, a section reserved for women, perhaps for facilitating the purda-using harem inmates for freely visiting it. This painting, however, deviates a little from this Mughal tradition. While under strict Mughal norms a shop was required to have a woman as its keeper, this shop has a male, though it is the shop’s owner himself who could deal with them with appropriate dignity and respect. The painting’s visual aspect is very strong strengthened further by the brilliant textiles hung from the ceiling of the shop – lahariyas, the textiles having waving patterns, tied-and-dyed, mirror-inlaid, brocaded, printed, pained, embroidered among others, all glistening with gold’s glow and brilliant colours.

This description by Prof. P.C. Jain and Dr. Daljeet. Prof. Jain specializes on the aesthetics of literature and is the author of numerous books on Indian art and culture. Dr. Daljeet is the curator of the Miniature Painting Gallery, National Museum, New Delhi. They have both collaborated together on a number of books.

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