A Study of Bundi School of Painting

A Study of Bundi School of Painting

A Study of Bundi School of Painting

A Study of Bundi School of Painting


It was a great pleasure to go through Dr. Jiwan Sodhi's work on the BUNDI SCHOOL OF PAINTING. The book was given the final shape when I happened to be the Director General of the National Museum, the collection of which served as the source material for the dissertation. Under the guidance of her research supervisor, Dr. Daljeet, Keeper of the Paintings Department, Dr. Sodhi had ample opportunities to examine the original works of Bundi School and also to compare them with other major styles of Rajasthan.

The School had its birth in the rocky region of Chunar in the early 17th century when Rao Rattan Singh was controlling the eastern Uttar Pradesh under Akbar and Jahangir. The workshop subsequently shifted to the land of Bundi which has beautiful view of mountains, rivers and forests rather a rare feature in the sandy Rajpootana (Rajasthan). While all chiefs patronised the art of painting, it was Rao Ummed Singh under whose initiative the Chitrashala of Bundi Palace was built. Consequently, the place ushered into an independent and distinct school of miniatures.

Known for deep blue sky, with flight of bïrds, lightning, green trees and hills in the background, plaintain groves, multicoloured mansions, use of yellow, orange, crimson and persian blue colours and finishing touch of gold, the Bundi miniatures look very pleasing. Female beauty finds a special favour although one lady is similar to the other. Rendering of Pauranic legends, Krishna Lila, particularly based on the Bhagavata, Baramasa, Nayaka-Nayika Bheda and some love scenes of later period were popular in the Bundi atelier.

Dr. Sodhi has highlighted all these aspects of Bundi style and has also discussed its distinctness and interaction with other regional schools. The excellent presentation has been suitably corroborated with selected illustrations. The work has added further grace to the grandeur of a famous style of miniatures.

I am sure the book will be received well by scholars, critics and students of Indian art. I wish a bright future to the author.


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