• Until 17 November 2013

    The exhibition Courtly Elegance: Scenes from Indian Princely States highlights various aspects of life at court; be it at the pompous and important Mughal court in Agra and Delhi or in the states of Rajasthan, for example in Mewar (Udaipur), Jaipur or Kishangarh.

    The elite let their painters who were either employed at the court's workshop or received commissions for single paintings or painting series depict their surroundings. Formal darbar (audience) scenes which visualized the power of the rendered persons were especially esteemed. The ruling class, usually capped and gowned, asked for visual documentation of important meetings and festivities at court, but also hunting excursions on horse or elephant back were favoured, depicting the rulers with their emblems of power such as hunting falcons.

    But also the more inaccessible parts of the palace such as the harem served as subject matter for paintings. Beautiful women lounge under trees, stare out of windows or are shown longing for their absent lovers.