ART OF INDIA: Images of Nature


ART OF INDIA: Images of Nature

JUDITH MAGEE    Book Number: 85545    Product format: Paperback

India has one of the richest natural histories in the world, and the country's artistic heritage reflects its diversity of flora and fauna grouped here by Ethnographical and Topographical, Botanical and Zoological art. The Natural History Museum's collection of Indian watercolour drawings was acquired through the East India Company's presence there for almost three centuries, and the paintings range from works of scientific interest to depictions of native artefacts. The Company encouraged research into local plants, agricultural policy and forestry as part of its commercial expansion, relying on the expertise of the indigenous population. This led to the foundation of botanical gardens in key regions, the most important of which was Sibpur, close to Calcutta, and these gardens commissioned artists to record their valued specimens. Among them, Thomas Hardwicke was an artist whose work formed the basis of the Museum's collection, while William Henry Sykes made lively sketches of agricultural machinery in action, for instance a bucket well operated by bullocks which is reproduced here. Botanical drawings include the transparent delicacy of Joseph Reichel's Tiger Lotus and Champak Tree, a sinuous orchid from the Saharanpor Garden collection, and a superbly coloured study of cocoa, nutmeg and clove by Margaret Cockburn. Birds are represented in fine studies by Lady Mary Bentinck, for instance her Blue-Throated Barbet, while animals from the Hardwicke collection include the famous chained rhinoceros. 112pp, 2013 first edition softback, full page stunning colour reproductions.
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Additional product information

ISBN 9780565093105
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