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Illustration from an Abduction of Rukmini Series: The Marriage of Krishna and Rukmini, c. 1800

India: Himachal Pradesh, Kangra Workshop, 1775-1825
Opaque watercolor on paper
image: 7-3/4 x 11-7/8 in. (19.7 x 30.2 cm); sheet: 9-7/8 x 13-3/8 in. (25.1 x 34.0 cm)
Norton Simon Museum, Gift of Vineet and Floretta Kapoor
© Norton Simon Museum

Not on view

This painting illustrates the happy conclusion of the Rukmini-haran, a story describing the princess Rukmini’s devotion to Krishna. Having escaped an unhappy betrothal to a powerful king, she travels to Krishna’s palace in Dvaraka to be wed to the blue lord.

The artist has used a combination of perspectives to illustrate the wedding ceremony and onlookers’ reactions. Krishna, Rukmini, and other participants in the ceremony are seen from above, yet the patterned surface of the palace walls that surround them runs along the painting’s bottom edge. This manipulation of interior and exterior spaces characterizes the work of Phurku, a painter who worked in the Kangra workshop for nearly forty years, and who may have executed this painting.

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