Lakshmi Vilas Palace, [Baroda]
Medium: Photographic print
Photograph of the Lakshmi Vilas Palace, at Baroda in Gujarat, taken by an unknown photographer as part of the Elgin Collection: 'Autumn Tour 1896'. A colossal structure, the palace was built for the Gaekwar Sayaji Rao III (r.1875-1939) and was reputedly the most expensive private building erected in India in the 19th century. Originally designed by Major Charles Mant (1840-81) in the so-called "Indo-Saracenic" architectural style, it was begun in 1878 and completed after his death in 1890 by Robert Fellowes Chisholm (1840-1915). Both architects were pioneers of the Orientalist style, which combined European and Indo-Islamic forms with an emphasis on arches and domes. The skyline of the palace is a fantastical mixture of bangaldar eaves, chhatris, a tall tower and a central cupola. This is a view of the façade from the north-east, with the tower in the centre and the portico entrance to the Durbar Hall at the right.