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Textile depicting Guru Nanak and his companions
Place of Origin: India or Pakistan, Punjab region
Date: approx. 1900-1950
Materials: Silk with embroidered design
Dimensions: H. 44 3/4 in x W. 45 in, H. 113.7 cm x W. 114.3 cm
Credit Line: Gift of the Kapany Collection
Department: South Asian Art
Collection: Textiles
Object Number: 1998.108
On Display: No
Culture: Sikh

Description

Label:

This fringed textile, likely a cover for a holy book, is embroidered with the figure of Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion. The guru is seated in the center under a tree with a halo around his head, holding prayer beads in his hand. He is accompanied by his musician companion Mardana, at the left, and his faithful disciple Bhai Bala, who holds a peacock-feather fly whisk as a respectful attendant. The square shape of this textile also corresponds to the square form of the gurdwara, the Sikh house of worship.

Embroidered textiles of this type, a rumal or coverlet, were used as ceremonial covers for gifts in many regions of India, but are most frequently associated with the region of Chamba (Punjab Hills region, Himachal Pradesh). These often illustrate Hindu subject matter, such as scenes from the life of Krishna.


More Information

Exhibition History: "Saints and Kings: Arts, Culture, and Legacy of the Sikhs", Asian Art Museum, 3/10/2017 - 6/18/2017
Label:

This fringed textile, likely a cover for a holy book, is embroidered with the figure of Guru Nanak, the founder of the Sikh religion. The guru is seated in the center under a tree with a halo around his head, holding prayer beads in his hand. He is accompanied by his musician companion Mardana, at the left, and his faithful disciple Bhai Bala, who holds a peacock-feather fly whisk as a respectful attendant. The square shape of this textile also corresponds to the square form of the gurdwara, the Sikh house of worship.

Embroidered textiles of this type, a rumal or coverlet, were used as ceremonial covers for gifts in many regions of India, but are most frequently associated with the region of Chamba (Punjab Hills region, Himachal Pradesh). These often illustrate Hindu subject matter, such as scenes from the life of Krishna.


Exhibition History: "Saints and Kings: Arts, Culture, and Legacy of the Sikhs", Asian Art Museum, 3/10/2017 - 6/18/2017