Mother and Child

Attributed to Chokha, Indian, active 1799 - 1824

Made in Devgarh, Rajasthan, Mewar Region, India, Asia
or made in Udaipur, Rajasthan, Mewar Region, India, Asia

c. 1810

Opaque watercolor and gold on paper

Sheet: 9 7/16 × 6 3/4 inches (24 × 17.1 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

Credit Line:
125th Anniversary Acquisition. Alvin O. Bellak Collection, 2004

Social Tags [?]

holy flame [x]   motherhood [x]  

[Add Your Own Tags]

This unusual painting is based on a European image of the Madonna and baby Jesus. However, the brilliantly idiosyncratic artist Chokha reinterprets his European prototype in a manner very different from its meaning in the Christian context. Chokha turns the unfamiliar foreign mother into a half-comical, half-disturbing statement on the legendarily (to his Indian audience) excessive sexuality of European women. In this bizarre vision, Chokha also carries to a high point the modeling effects of light and shade that were introduced to Indian artists through European art. Chokha probably attained knowledge of European images while working at the Mewar royal capital of Udaipur, not far from his hometown of Deogarh, where he also worked.