Dec 14, 2010

Krishna sporting with the gopis in the Jumna River, from a Bhagavata Purana

Krishna sporting with the gopis in the Jumna River, from a Bhagavata Purana

c. 1525–50

Gum tempera and ink on paper

Overall: 16.5 x 22.2 cm (6 1/2 x 8 3/4 in.)

Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Alvin N. Haas 1971.171

Location

Description

This page is from one of the earliest surviving illustrated Hindu manuscripts from India. It belongs to an extensive series on the life of Krishna, an incarnation of Vishnu. Shown here in blue, frolicking energetically with a bevy of young women from the cowherder village where he lived as a youth, Krishna is in the middle of the composition and the center of attention. Celestial musicians offer flower garlands and beat percussion instruments in the skies to accompany their passionate play. Lively gestures and bold patterning of the water lend to the exuberance of the scene.

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