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  1. INSTRUCTIONS & SAMPLES

    How to use
  2. FREE Samples
    4 Submodules
  3. PAPER I: ANCIENT INDIA
    1. Sources
    9 Submodules
  4. 2. Pre-history and Proto-history
    3 Submodules
  5. 3. Indus Valley Civilization
    8 Submodules
  6. 4. Megalithic Cultures
    3 Submodules
  7. 5. Aryans and Vedic Period
    8 Submodules
  8. 6. Period of Mahajanapadas
    10 Submodules
  9. 7. Mauryan Empire
    7 Submodules
  10. 8. Post – Mauryan Period
    7 Submodules
  11. 9. Early State and Society in Eastern India, Deccan and South India
    9 Submodules
  12. 10. Guptas, Vakatakas and Vardhanas
    14 Submodules
  13. 11. The Regional States during the Gupta Era
    18 Submodules
  14. 12. Themes in Early Indian Cultural History
    9 Submodules
  15. PAPER 1: MEDIEVAL INDIA
    13. Early Medieval India (750-1200)
    9 Submodules
  16. 14. Cultural Traditions in India (750-1200)
    11 Submodules
  17. 15. The Thirteenth Century
    2 Submodules
  18. 16. The Fourteenth Century
    6 Submodules
  19. 17. Administration, Society, Culture, Economy in the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries
    13 Submodules
  20. 18. The Fifteenth and Early Sixteenth Century – Political Developments and Economy
    14 Submodules
  21. 19. The Fifteenth and early Sixteenth Century – Society and Culture
    3 Submodules
  22. 20. Akbar
    8 Submodules
  23. 21. Mughal Empire in the Seventeenth Century
    7 Submodules
  24. 22. Economy and Society in the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries
    11 Submodules
  25. 23. Culture in the Mughal Empire
    8 Submodules
  26. 24. The Eighteenth Century
    7 Submodules
  27. PAPER-II: MODERN INDIA
    1. European Penetration into India
    6 Submodules
  28. 2. British Expansion in India
    4 Submodules
  29. 3. Early Structure of the British Raj
    9 Submodules
  30. 4. Economic Impact of British Colonial Rule
    12 Submodules
  31. 5. Social and Cultural Developments
    7 Submodules
  32. 6. Social and Religious Reform movements in Bengal and Other Areas
    8 Submodules
  33. 7. Indian Response to British Rule
    8 Submodules
  34. 8. Indian Nationalism - Part I
    11 Submodules
  35. 9. Indian Nationalism - Part II
    17 Submodules
  36. 10. Constitutional Developments in Colonial India between 1858 and 1935
  37. 11. Other strands in the National Movement (Revolutionaries & the Left)
  38. 12. Politics of Separatism
  39. 13. Consolidation as a Nation
  40. 14. Caste and Ethnicity after 1947
  41. 15. Economic development and political change
  42. PAPER-II: WORLD HISTORY
    16. Enlightenment and Modern ideas
  43. 17. Origins of Modern Politics
  44. 18. Industrialization
  45. 19. Nation-State System
  46. 20. Imperialism and Colonialism
  47. 21. Revolution and Counter-Revolution
  48. 22. World Wars
  49. 23. The World after World War II
  50. 24. Liberation from Colonial Rule
  51. 25. Decolonization and Underdevelopment
  52. 26. Unification of Europe
  53. 27. Disintegration of the Soviet Union and the Rise of the Unipolar World
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I. Introduction to Deccan Painting

Deccan Painting

Emergence of Deccan Painting

  • Deccan Painting emerged in the late 15th century in the kingdoms of Ahmadnagar, Bijapur, and Golconda.
  • This distinct style predates Mughal painting and was influenced by Persian and local Indian traditions.
  • The zenith of Deccan Painting was reached in the 17th century, with a variety of subjects, including portraits, illustrations of literary works, and illustrated chronicles.

Kingdoms of Ahmadnagar, Bijapur, and Golconda

  • The Deccan region was home to three major kingdoms: Ahmadnagar, Bijapur, and Golconda.
  • Each kingdom had its own unique style and contributed to the development of Deccan Painting.
  • Court patronage played a significant role in the growth of this art form, with rulers commissioning various works of art.

Zenith of Deccan Painting in the 17th century

  • Deccan Painting reached its peak in the 17th century, with a wide range of subjects and styles.
  • The paintings were known for their rich palette, intricate details, and unique features.
  • Some of the most famous works from this period include the Ragamala paintings, royal processions, and portraits of rulers and nobles.

Illustrated chronicles: Tuzuk-i-Asafiya

  • The Tuzuk-i-Asafiya is an example of an illustrated chronicle in Deccan Painting.
  • This work provides a glimpse into the history and culture of the Deccan region during its peak.
  • Illustrated chronicles were a unique aspect of Deccan Painting, showcasing the artistic talents of the painters and the rich history of the region.

II. Court Patronage in Deccan Painting

Ahmadnagar: Illustrated manuscript of Ta’rif-i Husain Shahi

  • Ahmadnagar was one of the major centers of Deccan Painting.
  • The illustrated manuscript of Ta’rif-i Husain Shahi is a significant example of court patronage in Ahmadnagar.
  • This manuscript showcases the artistic talent of the painters and the rich history of the region.

Bijapur: Illustrated manuscript of Nujum-ul-Ulum

  • Bijapur was another important center of Deccan Painting.
  • The illustrated manuscript of Nujum-ul-Ulum was commissioned by Ali Adil Shah, who had several painters working at his court.
  • This work is a testament to the artistic skill and creativity of the painters in Bijapur.

Ibrahim Adil Shah (1580-1627)

  • Ibrahim Adil Shah was the greatest ruler of the Bijapur line.
  • He was an accomplished painter, calligraphist, musician, and poet.
  • His patronage played a significant role in the development of Deccan Painting, particularly in the Ragamala painting tradition.

Ragamala painting tradition

  • The Ragamala painting tradition emerged in Ahmadnagar and Bijapur towards the close of the 16th century.
  • This tradition reached its highest point under the patronage of Ibrahim Adil Shah.
  • Ragamala paintings are a series of illustrative paintings depicting various Indian musical modes, called Ragas.

Golkonda: Royal processions

  • Golkonda was another major center of Deccan Painting.
  • Royal processions were a popular subject in Golkonda’s Deccan style.
  • Several paintings of this type have come down to us from the reign of Abdulla Qutb Shah (1626-72) of Golkonda.

Hyderabad: Azam Shah and the album of Himmatyar Khan

  • Hyderabad was also a significant center for Deccan Painting.
  • The painting of Azam Shah returning from bird-shooting and approaching his pleasure garden at the foot of the Golconda fort is an example of court patronage in Hyderabad.
  • The album of Himmatyar Khan, a noble of the Nizam’s court, showcases the artistic talent and creativity of the painters in Hyderabad.

III. Style and Themes of Deccan Painting

Influence of Persian and Mughal Traditions

  • Deccan Painting was influenced by both Persian and Mughal traditions, which can be seen in the techniques, styles, and subjects of the paintings.
  • The Persian influence is evident in the use of rich colors, intricate details, and the overall refinement of the paintings.
  • The Mughal influence can be seen in the exchange of artists between the two courts, as well as the inclusion of Deccani paintings in albums compiled by Akbar and Jahangir.
  • Despite these influences, Deccan Painting managed to maintain its aesthetic originality by creatively reshaping extraneous suggestions.

Deccan Paintings as Aesthetically Original

  • Deccan paintings are known for their unique features and themes, which set them apart from other Indian miniatures.
  • The best specimens of Deccan paintings showcase the artistic talent and creativity of the painters, making them aesthetically original.
  • The paintings often depict scenes from daily life, royal processions, and portraits of rulers and nobles, showcasing the rich history and culture of the Deccan region.

Features of Deccan Paintings

Deccan paintings are characterized by several distinct features, including:

  • Hierarchical scaling: The principal figure is often larger than the subordinate figures, emphasizing their importance.
  • Richness of the palette: Deccan paintings are known for their rich colors, with white and gold being used more prominently than in other Indian miniatures.
  • Typical jewelry: The jewelry depicted in Deccan paintings is unique, such as the plaque of the necklace.
  • Exaggerated swirl of the girdle and stole: This feature is especially noticeable in feminine figures, adding a sense of movement and grace to the paintings.
  • Intersection of diagonals: Diagonals often intersect to form an arch around the principal figures, creating a sense of depth and focus.

Other Features of Deccan Paintings

In addition to the features mentioned above, Deccan paintings also include:

  • Composite animals: A large animal made up of many smaller images of other animals, such as the composite Buraq and elephant.
  • Large haloes for rulers: Following Mughal precedent, rulers in Deccan paintings are often depicted with large haloes, signifying their importance and divine status.
  • Servants fanning with cloths: Unlike the chowris or peacock-feather fans seen in other Indian paintings, servants in Deccan paintings fan their masters or mistresses with cloths.
  • Straight Deccan swords: Swords in Deccan paintings usually have a straight form, distinct from the curved swords seen in other Indian art.
  • Elephants in Deccani art: Elephants were very popular in both the life and art of the Deccani courts, often depicted with marbling effects in the bodies.

IV. Decline of Deccan Painting

Mughal Conquest of the Region

  • The Mughal Empire, under the rule of Emperor Aurangzeb, began to expand its territories into the Deccan region in the late 17th century.
  • The conquest of the Deccan kingdoms of Ahmadnagar, Bijapur, and Golconda led to the subjugation of these once-thriving centers of Deccan Painting.
  • As the Mughals established their rule over the region, the patronage and support for Deccan Painting began to wane, leading to a decline in the production of new works.

Migration of Deccani Painters to Rajput Courts

  • With the decline in patronage and support for Deccan Painting, many Deccani painters sought opportunities elsewhere.
  • A significant number of these painters migrated to the Rajput courts in northern India, where they found new patrons and continued to practice their art.
  • The migration of Deccani painters to Rajput courts resulted in a blending of styles, as the artists incorporated elements of Deccan Painting into the existing Rajput painting traditions.
  • This migration further contributed to the decline of Deccan Painting, as the remaining artists in the Deccan region struggled to maintain the distinct style and themes that had once defined the art form.

V. Introduction to Patna Kalam Painting

Patna Kalam Painting

Patna Kalam Painting, also known as Patna Qalaam, Patna Kalam, or Company painting, is a unique style of Indian painting that originated in Bihar, India, during the 18th and 19th centuries. This art form is considered the world’s first independent school of painting that focused exclusively on the commoners and their lifestyle, which contributed to its popularity. The principal centers of Patna Kalam Painting were Patna, Danapur, and Arrah.

Origin of Patna Kalam Painting

  • Patna Kalam Painting is an offshoot of Mughal painting, which faced mass prosecution and aversion during the rule of Aurangzeb in the late 17th and early 18th centuries.
  • As artisans sought refuge, a group of painters migrated eastward, eventually settling in Murshidabad under the patronage of the Nawab of Bengal and other local aristocrats.
  • In the mid-18th century, following the fall of the Nawab of Bengal and the subsequent decline of Murshidabad, the artisans began moving to Patna, the next largest city in the east.
  • In Patna, the painters found patronage from local aristocracy and Indophile scions of the early East India Company, leading to the development of a unique form of painting known as Patna Kalam or Company painting.

Influence of Mughal Painting and Company (British) Style

  • Patna Kalam Painting reflects the influence of Mughal painting, Company (British) style, and local specialties, resulting in a synthesis of all three styles.
  • The colors and linings of the portraits in Patna Kalam paintings are reminiscent of Mughal style, while the shading techniques are borrowed from the British style.
  • However, unlike the Mughal style, which features wide and exquisitely decorated borders, Patna Kalam primarily focuses on the subject of the painting.

Synthesis of Mughal, British, and Local Styles

  • Patna Kalam Painting combines elements from Mughal, British, and local styles to create a unique and distinct art form.
  • The paintings often depict scenes from daily life, such as stone-cutters, barbers, shoemakers, palanquin bearers, peddlers, butter-sellers, distilleries, bakeries, maid-servants, and modes of transportation.
  • The indigenous style of coloring in Patna Kalam paintings is achieved using brushes made from the hairs of domestic animals like squirrels, goats, pigs, and buffaloes.

Peak of Patna Kalam Painting (1850-1880)

  • Patna Kalam Painting reached its peak between 1850 and 1880, with artists such as Sewak Ram, Hulash Lal, Jai Ram Das, Jhumak Lal, Fakirchand, and Tuni Lal gaining prominence.
  • The art form continued to flourish under the guidance of Shiv Lal and Shiv Dayalji, sons of Fakirchand Lal and Tuni Lal, respectively.
  • The last two representatives of the Patna style of paintings were Babu Mahadeo Lal and Shri Ishwari Prasad Verma, who continued to use extracts from plants, barks, flowers, and metals for coloring.

VI. Salient Features of Patna Kalam Painting

Focus on the Subject of the Painting

  • Unlike the Mughal style, which features wide and exquisitely decorated borders, Patna Kalam primarily focuses on the subject of the painting.
  • This emphasis on the subject matter made Patna Kalam paintings more accessible and affordable to a wider audience.

Miniature Painting on Paper, Glass, Mica, and Ivory Sheets

  • Patna Kalam paintings are categorized as miniature paintings.
  • These paintings were mostly made on paper, glass, mica, and ivory sheets, showcasing the versatility of the artists.

Techniques Employed

  • Slanting dot system for shading: Unlike Delhi artists, Patna Kalam painters used the slanting dot system for shading, creating a unique visual effect.
  • Kajli seahi for painting without pencil contours: Patna Kalam painters painted straightaway with the brush without marking with a pencil to delineate the contours of the picture, a technique known as Kajli seahi.

Themes from Common Daily Life

  • Patna Kalam paintings primarily depicted scenes from common daily life, making it the world’s first independent school of painting to do so.
  • Subjects included stone-cutters, barbers, shoemakers, palanquin bearers, peddlers, butter-sellers, distilleries, bakeries, maid-servants, and modes of transportation.

Less Use of Background and Landscapes

  • Patna Kalam paintings rarely used backgrounds and landscapes, focusing instead on the subject of the painting.
  • This approach made the paintings less expensive and more accessible to a wider audience.

Indigenous Style of Coloring

  • Patna Kalam paintings employed an indigenous style of coloring, using brushes made from the hairs of domestic animals like squirrels, goats, pigs, and buffaloes.
  • This unique coloring technique contributed to the distinct visual appeal of Patna Kalam paintings.

VII. Differences between Patna Kalam and Mughal Style

FeaturePatna KalamMughal Style
FocusPrimarily on the subject of the paintingWide and exquisitely decorated borders, often featuring kings and courts
SplendorLacks the splendor of Mughal styleKnown for its splendor and grandeur
SubjectsCommon daily life, commoners, and their lifestyleKings, courts, and aristocracy
Background and LandscapesLess use of background and landscapesExtensive use of background and landscapes
SizeMiniature paintings on paper, glass, mica, and ivory sheetsLarger paintings, often featuring kings and courts
TechniquesSlanting dot system for shading, Kajli seahi for painting without pencil contoursDifferent shading techniques, use of pencil contours
ThemesScenes from daily life, occupations, and modes of transportationRoyal processions, portraits of rulers and nobles, and court scenes

VIII. Main Painters of Patna Kalam

The main painters who contributed to the development and popularity of this art form include:

  • Sewak Ram (1770-1830)
  • Hulash Lal (1795-1880)
  • Jai Ram Das
  • Jhumak Lal
  • Fakirchand
  • Tuni Lal

During the peak of Patna Kalam Painting between 1850 and 1880, two principal artists, Shiv Lal and Shiv Dayalji, sons of Fakirchand Lal and Tuni Lal respectively, played a significant role in building the reputation of the Patna School.

The last two representatives of the Patna style of paintings were Babu Mahadeo Lal and Shri Ishwari Prasad Verma (Ex-Vice Principal of the Government School of Art, Calcutta). These artists continued to use extracts from plants, barks, flowers, and metals for coloring their paintings.

Important Paintings of Patna Kalam

Some important paintings from the Patna Kalam style include:

  • Mahadev Lal’s “Ragini Gandhari” and “Ragini Todi”: In the Ragini series, the artist has displayed the Virhini heroine holding a veena.

Characteristics of Human Paintings in Patna Kalam

Human paintings in Patna Kalam have the following characteristics:

  • Heavy eyebrows
  • Pointed nose
  • Thin face
  • Deep-set staring eyes
  • Big mustaches for men

The canvas, colors, and brushes used in Patna Kalam paintings were prepared by the painters themselves.

IX. Conclusion: Legacy of Deccan and Patna Kalam Paintings

Deccan and Patna Kalam paintings have left a lasting legacy in the world of Indian art. Both styles emerged as distinct art forms, influenced by various traditions, yet maintaining their unique characteristics and themes.

Deccan Painting, which flourished in the late 15th and 17th centuries, creatively reshaped extraneous suggestions and became aesthetically original. The style is known for its hierarchical scaling, richness of the palette, and focus on the subject of the painting. Despite its decline, Deccan Painting remains an important part of India’s rich artistic heritage.

Patna Kalam Painting, on the other hand, originated in Bihar during the 18th and 19th centuries and focused on the commoners and their lifestyle. This art form synthesized Mughal, British, and local styles, resulting in a unique and distinct art form that reached its peak between 1850 and 1880. Patna Kalam paintings primarily depicted scenes from common daily life and employed an indigenous style of coloring.

Both Deccan and Patna Kalam paintings have influenced later Indian art styles, particularly in the use of rich colors, intricate details, and unique techniques. The legacy of these art forms can be seen in the works of contemporary Indian artists who continue to draw inspiration from these rich traditions.

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