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Talking about the Rajasthani or especially the Rajput clothing style, their saafas or turbans are an interesting aspect. Along with the long piece of white cloth known as dhoti, and a cotton tunic, Rajputs’ turbans are tied to the representation of their particular clans. Also known as, pagdis, specific colors could signify the situation or the circumstances too. For instance, the white turban would symbolize a funeral procession by immediate family members. Blue, dark maroon or khaki turbans are for others for condolence visits.

When times are happy or the crops are harvested, Rajputs would wear blooming colors. Usually motiya or bright pink looking turbans are seen worn favorably during the month of July whereas lahariya turban (striped cloth made with the tie and dye technique) of pink, or red and yellow during the monsoons.

Turbans are tributed as crowns for Rajputs. During the regal times, court maidens were expected to be honed in turban tying skills. Moreover, its quite amazing that after a distance of every 15 kms, the size and the style of pagdi visibally change in Rajasthan.

Rajput women too, are famous for matching up well to their male counterparts of their respective clans. With social barriers like purdah many women contributed iconically in major fields. The most striking is the elaborate jewelry that they practice. Along with adorning their palms, hands, feet and even legs with henna or mehndi, they cover themselves with gold jewelry from head to toe. In occasions like weddings and the Gangaur festival, the lehangas are almost as large as forty to sixty meters. Similarly, Rajasthani women do dress up the same way in the honor of the Goddess Gauri of Gangaur.

Just like the passion of living, the people of Rajasthan share in common among themselves, the art and culture of this place is also phenomenal. During the Mughal era, the one who desisted the foreign Muslim rule, quickly adapted and learned the art and craft work during the dominion. Skilled craftsmen and painters of the Mughal court were attracted towards the Indian form of art. They fulfilled their concept of establishing influential handicraft schools, music schools, etc., to lead to the golden age of the Indian art and architecture.

The intricate miniature painting schools such as the Bundi-Kota kalam, the Mewar School, Bikaner, Kishengarh, Marwar and the Jaipur schools flourished with the progress of the Mughals. Incredibly, each school has its own unique features, mostly inspired with the historic events and related aspects. In addition, the painters would also paint about the romantic and royal times of the Mughals too, on the canvas. These were done with utmost care and precision of minute details as well as strong and bold lines to create a harmonious pattern.

Kishengarh’s famous Bani Thani is considered as an epitome for traditional Indian beauty and is compared with Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa. In the portrait, she is painted with paramount details of beauty features like long fish-like eye that is half closed, long and sharp nose and chin, thin lips curving into a smile, extra finesse in the tall and thin figure embellished with splendor and grace. Her hair is long till the waist, with thin curls on her cheeks. She is decorated with jewels like ruby, pearls, and emerald from top to bottom and holds two lotus flowers in her right hand. Her face is half covered with a veil.

The Bundi-Kota paintings depict the famous and strong influence of the Mughal style. An example can be the Chunar Ragamala painted during the late sixteenth century. Much of the origin is unknown but features like double-lidded eyes and marked shading with spontaneous calligraphy confirm that the artists travelled within states extensively.

The exquisitely miniature paintings from the Jaipur School of art are celebrated for depicting fierce camel fights, charming women dancing in the midnight enticing Krishna, a tiger or a boar hunting scene, the portrayal of elaborate celebrations of Rajput princes, etc. Overall, they actually show the rich mingle of both the Mughal and the Rajput lives.

Jaipur homes all the above mentioned remarkably known hand painted miniature works. It’s quite easier to discover the city for many miniature paintings of deities, royal families, and popularly nature. The by lanes of Jaipur’s Amer Road can be seen with such handicraft miniature paintings. In addition, other private art galleries also keep such beauties on sale.



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