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Views in Mysore. The Deria Dowlut in Seringapatam. Frescoes on wall

Views in Mysore. The Deria Dowlut in Seringapatam. Frescoes on wall

Photographer: Lyon, Edmund David

Medium: Photographic print

Date: 1868

Shelfmark: Photo 212/6(1)

Item number: 21261

Genre: Photograph

Photograph from an album of 40 albumen prints by Edmund David Lyon. Karnataka has a long tradition of paintings used to decorate the walls of temples and palaces, although most surviving paintings date from the post-Vijayanagar era, after the 16th century. Srirangapatna, the seat of the Mysore Wodeyars who made it their capital in 1610, was a cultural centre and source of paintings. The tradition continued in the era of Haider Ali and Tipu Sultan who took over from the Wodeyars in the second half of the 18th century. The walls of Darya Daulat Bagh, the summer palace of Tipu Sultan, are covered with impressive paintings. On the west wall are portraits of Haider and Tipu and scenes from the second Anglo-Mysore war in which they were victorious over the British, and on the east wall are portraits of Tipu's contemporaries and scenes from everyday life. Lyon's 'Notes to Accompany a Series of Photographs Prepared to Illustrate the Ancient Architecture of Southern India' (Marion & Co., London, 1870), edited by James Fergusson, gives the following description: '[this] - shows the Paintings on the wall at the east side of the building. The subjects represent different scenes and ceremonies of Mussulman life, though in direct violation of the second commandment to which Mohammedans generally strictly adhere. These paintings are singularly interesting, as exhibiting, at the end of the eighteenth century, exactly the same mechanical stage of art as was reached by the Italians in the end of the thirteenth. The frescoes in the Arena chapel at Padua show exactly the same mode of dividing and depicting subjects, and the same imperfect notions of perspective, as here shown; though the sentiments in the two cases are very different'.

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