Indian and Himalayan Art
Lakshmana Rejects Surpanakha; Rama and Sita Play Chaupad
c. Early 19th century
Artist/maker unknown, India
Opaque watercolor on cloth-backed paper
Currently not on view
1994-148-546Stella Kramrisch Collection, 1994
LabelThis fragment of a Bengali pata (painted scroll) depicts events from the epic Ramayana. The scene takes place in the forest where the hero-god Rama (with dark-blue skin) has been exiled with his beautiful wife Sita and his brother Lakshmana. On the right side, Rama and Sita play a board game called chaupad. On the left side, Lakshmana rejects the advances of Surpanakha, sister of the demon-king Ravana. According to the tale, Surpanakha complains to her brother of her harsh treatment, and Ravana sends his henchman Maricha, disguised as a golden deer, to lure Rama and Lakshmana away from Sita.