Opaque watercolor on paper
Overall: 20.9 x 31.2 cm (8 1/4 x 12 5/16 in.)
Delia E. Holden Fund 1984.4
In the foreground the grotesque oversized corpse of Putana is being cut up with much difficulty by the
men of Vraj, the cowherd village where the Hindu god Krishna lived in his infancy and youth. Her
forearms and hands are already being conveyed to the massive pyre at the upper left. Krishna’s foster
father Nanda, the elder of the village, has come in a bullock cart to survey the situation, putting his
finger to his mouth in the gesture of astonishment.
At the right, baby Krishna is being bathed as cowherd women look on in shock. Krishna, who was incarnated in order to rid India of a tyrannical king, vanquished a series of his assassins-including Putana. Putana had come to the cowherd village in the form of a beautiful nursemaid with secretly poisoned breasts. When she began to nurse Krishna, instead of being poisoned by her, Krishna sucked the very life out of her, at which point she resumed her true form.
Although unfinished, this painting reveals the care the artist took with the drawing and shading of the
The information about this object, including provenance information, is based on historic information and may not be currently accurate or complete. Research on objects is an ongoing process, but the information about this object may not reflect the most current information available to CMA. If you notice a mistake or have additional information about this object, please email email@example.com.
To request more information about this object, study images, or bibliography, contact the Ingalls Library Reference Desk.
Is something not working on this page? Please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Request a digital file from Image Services that is not available through CC0, a detail image, or any image with a color bar. If you have questions about requesting an image, please email email@example.com.