273
273

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE CALIFORNIAN COLLECTION

Ramaswami Naidu)
UNTITLED (MOTHER AND CHILD)
Estimate
25,00035,000
LOT SOLD. 81,250 USD
JUMP TO LOT
273

PROPERTY FROM A PRIVATE CALIFORNIAN COLLECTION

Ramaswami Naidu)
UNTITLED (MOTHER AND CHILD)
Estimate
25,00035,000
LOT SOLD. 81,250 USD
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art

|
New York

Ramaswami Naidu)
UNTITLED (MOTHER AND CHILD)
Signed and dated RAMASWAMI NAIDU / TREVANDRUM / 1873' lower right
Oil on canvas
31 3/4 by 26 1/8 in. (80.7 by 66.5 cm.)
Painted in 1873
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Provenance

Acquired from a California estate

Catalogue Note

In the latter half of the 19th century, several Indian artists began to experiment with oil paint as a medium, producing works in a distinct indigenous style that lay somewhere between the technique of watercolour and academic oil painting. Ravi Varma has been noted as the first Indian artist to apply the traditions of Western academic realism to the representation of Indian themes and subject matter although he first sought the guidance of Ramaswami Naidu, the Travancore court artist. Weary of Varma's burgeoning talent, Naidu refused to teach him how to paint with oils. It has been noted that despite this, some of Naidu's own pupils secretly tutored Varma and assisted with his mastering of the technique. Despite such rivalries, Naidu flourished as a painter, even winning international recognition in the catalogue of the Vienna Universal Exhibition of 1873.

This beautiful picture illustrates a mother and son, with cherub-like features and pouty lips that are characteristic of many of Naidu's depictions. They are elegantly adorned with opulent diamonds, pearls, rubies and emeralds that are painted with careful and precise brushstrokes. These jewels shine and sparkle and seem to leap off the canvas, highlighted by the chiaro-scuro effect of their fair skin tone and black background. It is apparent that the subjects are from a wealthy or royal household and Naidu was commissioned to paint this portrait. This painting gives the viewer insight into Naidu's mastery of realism and the social history around the time it was created.

Modern & Contemporary South Asian Art

|
New York