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Monday, 22 November 2010

India's Maharaja Exhbit in Canada at the Art Gallery of Ontario



I saw the exhibit, Maharaja: The Splendour of India’s Royal Courts at Toronto’s Art Gallery of Ontario (AGO, on until April 3, 2011). The exhibit includes paintings, furniture, jewellery and more made for India’s kings. I became interested in the paintings done before British colonial rule. The paintings reminded me of ancient Egyptian and Asian art. Many figures were in profile. There was little if any modeling of figures, linear or atmospheric perspective. The paintings were decorative with a focus on the picture plane and flatness instead of depth in space and the third dimension. Instead of linear perspective there was a vertical elevation of objects on the picture plane. The royal figures were seen with a nimbus around the head; larger than other figures, or twice in the painting. The exhibit is well worth a visit as it shows a different style from western art. It also highlights India’s history. There is a link to the AGO on this site.

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