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Krishna and Radha standing on a throne, with scenes from Krishna's life and a cityscape in the background
Place of Origin: India, Udaipur or Jaipur, Rajasthan state
Date: approx. 1880
Materials: Opaque watercolors and gold on paper
Dimensions: H. 14 in x W. 10 1/4 in, H. 35.6 cm x W. 26.0 cm
Credit Line: Gift of Elton L. Puffer
Department: South Asian Art
Collection: Painting
Object Number: 2004.47
On Display: No

More Information

Exhibition History: "Vishnu: India's Blue-Skinned Savior", Frist Center for Cultural Arts, February 20, 2011 -May 29, 2011, Brooklyn Museum, June 24, 2011 - October 2, 2011
Additional Label:

Bhakti devotional literature describes the personal and intimate relationship between devotee and god in terms of romantic love—specifically that of Radha for Krishna. Radha is identified in several traditions as Krishna’s favorite among the cow-herding women of Mathura, and represents the most ardent lover. She stands out from the rest of his devoted admirers because of her all-encompassing, intense, and secret love for the god, and her willingness to defy all social conventions for the sake of union with Krishna.

In this painting, we see a haloed Krishna in one of his iconic forms as the mesmerizing, flute-playing divine hero, who with his music captures the attention of all—women, animals, birds, even the rivers and clouds. Radha gazes adoringly at him. Other scenes from Krishna’s life are shown in the background, including his dance (rasalila) with the cow-herder women, among whom Radha is singled out by a halo and her place closest to Krishna.

(Object label from Worshiping Women: Power and Devotion in Indian Painting.)


Exhibition History: "Vishnu: India's Blue-Skinned Savior", Frist Center for Cultural Arts, February 20, 2011 -May 29, 2011, Brooklyn Museum, June 24, 2011 - October 2, 2011
Expanded Label:

Bhakti devotional literature describes the personal and intimate relationship between devotee and god in terms of romantic love—specifically that of Radha for Krishna. Radha is identified in several traditions as Krishna’s favorite among the cow-herding women of Mathura, and represents the most ardent lover. She stands out from the rest of his devoted admirers because of her all-encompassing, intense, and secret love for the god, and her willingness to defy all social conventions for the sake of union with Krishna.

In this painting, we see a haloed Krishna in one of his iconic forms as the mesmerizing, flute-playing divine hero, who with his music captures the attention of all—women, animals, birds, even the rivers and clouds. Radha gazes adoringly at him. Other scenes from Krishna’s life are shown in the background, including his dance (rasalila) with the cow-herder women, among whom Radha is singled out by a halo and her place closest to Krishna.

(Object label from Worshiping Women: Power and Devotion in Indian Painting.)