Posted by Art Of Legend India [dot] Com On 1:22 AM
Bilaspur is situated in Himachal Pradesh in Satluj valley. The town of Bilaspur was founded in 1663. The state later became a princely state of British India, and was under the authority of the British province of Punjab. It saw the rise of the paintings in the mid 17th century. The earlier paintings were portraitures that were succeeded by illustrations of the Bhagavata Purana, Ramayana and Ragamala series in the 18th century. Besides these, painters at Bilaspur also executed paintings on coverlets for ceremonies and rituals. Bilaspur was as the centre of painting the seventeenth century. It was overshadowed by Basohli (a state that was neither very rich nor very large).
The faces are now naturalistic, yet they belong to a particular style or tradition an unusually sweet typewhich would continue to the last paintings of this school. The treatment of landscape is more idealized and rich and introduces a number of decorative trees and shrubs. It is curious to find that its slate gray trunks are heavily muddled and stylized. The swaying branches of the shrubs create a very romantic setting. These paintings have a porcelain quality. They are warm in expression. Every detail is made luminously decorative. Lush vegetation is shown with knotted tree trunks. Bilaspur painters show a preference for gold which is frequently used here; even the gray patches on Cows are picked out with gold. A fine leaf' from the Tehri-Garhwal Palace collection, illustrating the game of "Blindman's buff", is strikingly similar to the Bhagavata group of Bilaspur paintings.All paintings are courtesy of Art of Legend India.