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Radha and Krishna beside a Lake at Sunset

Artist/maker unknown, Indian

Made in Kota, Rajasthan, India, Asia

c. 1750

Opaque watercolor and gold on paper

Image: 10 1/2 × 7 1/4 inches (26.7 × 18.4 cm) Sheet: 11 3/8 inches (28.9 cm)

Curatorial Department:
South Asian Art

Object Location:

Currently not on view

Accession Number:

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

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In this scene, blue-colored Krishna and his beloved Radha overlap so closely that they almost become one. This perfect union of lovers expresses, on a religious level, the melding of human into divine that is the goal of the spiritual journey. The artist repeats the motif of union in the multiple bird couples filling the pond, including a pair of striking redheaded Sarus cranes, two great black birds that may be Indian cormorants, and a pair of whitebreasted kingfishers. Their mating and the lushness of the landscape indicate that this is monsoon season, a time of intimacy and rebirth and a metaphor for the state of bliss that comes from total, loving devotion to God.