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Portrait of Maharani Mahinder Kaur of Patiala
Place of Origin: India, Punjab state, former kingdom of Patiala
Date: 1940 - 1950
Materials: Oil on canvas
Dimensions: H. 26 in x W. 19 1/2 in, H. 66 cm x W. 49.5 cm (image)
Credit Line: Gift of the Kapany Collection
Department: South Asian Art
Collection: Painting
Object Number: 1998.107
On Display: No
Culture: Sikh

Description

Label: Portraits of specific historical women—distinct from idealized representations of goddesses or particular female types—are unusual in Indian art. They begin to appear from the late 1800s onwards when the status of some royal women changed as they became more publicly active in the political and social arenas. Maharani Mahinder Kaur, born in 1922, was the wife of Yadavindra Singh, the last ruler of Patiala before the kingdom was integrated into the Republic of India in 1947. She served as a member of Parliament and held other political offices from 1967 through 1984. She is seen in this portrait as an independent and authoritative personality. Compositional elements here—scale, pose, and setting—echo the depictions of male rulers seen in other paintings. Her elegant metallichued garments express traditional-style dress as well as fine taste and affluence. The portrait setting, amid European-style furnishings, also suggests wealth and status.

More Information

Exhibition History: "Saints and Kings: Arts, Culture, and Legacy of the Sikhs", Asian Art Museum, 3/10/2017 - 6/18/2017
Label: Portraits of specific historical women—distinct from idealized representations of goddesses or particular female types—are unusual in Indian art. They begin to appear from the late 1800s onwards when the status of some royal women changed as they became more publicly active in the political and social arenas. Maharani Mahinder Kaur, born in 1922, was the wife of Yadavindra Singh, the last ruler of Patiala before the kingdom was integrated into the Republic of India in 1947. She served as a member of Parliament and held other political offices from 1967 through 1984. She is seen in this portrait as an independent and authoritative personality. Compositional elements here—scale, pose, and setting—echo the depictions of male rulers seen in other paintings. Her elegant metallichued garments express traditional-style dress as well as fine taste and affluence. The portrait setting, amid European-style furnishings, also suggests wealth and status.
Exhibition History: "Saints and Kings: Arts, Culture, and Legacy of the Sikhs", Asian Art Museum, 3/10/2017 - 6/18/2017