Realms of Earth and Sky: Indian Painting from the Fifteenth to the Nineteenth Century comprises a collection of South Asian paintings drawn from the University of Virginia’s Fralin Museum of Art and major private collections in the Southeast. On view at the Fralin Museum from August 22 through December 21, 2014 the show will travel to the Tang Museum for the spring semester of 2015, and will be the focus of the 2015 Alfred Z. Solomon Residency.
The paintings represent a number of different artistic traditions and range across a span of five centuries. Themes include the stylistic relationship between Mughal and Rajput paintings and the function of book illustration. In meticulously rendered tableaux, visitors will encounter scenes ranging from the opulence of the Mughal court to the actions of gods in the forms of men, and from lively battles to depictions of intimate courtly love. The styles can be intricately refined or sweepingly bold, all contained in the small scale of the manuscript or album page.
Portraiture, religious and literary texts, and Ragamala paintings are particularly well represented in the The Fralin collection of Indian painting.
Highlights will include a rare sixteenth-century imperial Mughal painting by Khem Karan, a Rasikapriya illustration done by the famous seventeenth-century Mewari artist Sahibdin, and a portrait of the Guler ruler Raja Bishan Singh, attributed to Nainsukh.
A catalogue accompanying the exhibition will document the entire Fralin Indian painting collection and feature essays and catalogue entries by curator Daniel Ehnbom and Krista Gulbransen. As many of the exceptional works in The Fralin’s collection remain unpublished, the catalogue represents an important contribution to current scholarship on Indian painting.
The exhibition is curated by Daniel J. Ehnbom, Adjunct Curator of South Asian Art, The Fralin Museum of Art and Associate Professor of South Asian Art, McIntire Department of Art at the University of Virginia, with Krista Gulbransen, Assistant Professor of Art History and Visual Culture Studies at Whitman College and a former Visiting Assistant Professor of Art History, Skidmore College, and former Luzak-Lindner Graduate Fellow at The Fralin Museum.
Organized for the Tang Teaching Museum by Rachel Seligman, Assistant Director for Curatorial Affairs, and Saleema Waraich, Assistant Professor of Art History, Skidmore College.