I saw the fair one freely,
beheld her as she bathed:
muslin clung upon her breast,
Happy he who
sees her thus!”
from Vidyapati’s Bangiya Padabali, best describes the mood of the painting that
adorns this beautiful wooden jharokha. The Jharokha or window as a small opening
in the wall serves the purpose of seeing or peeping, and it is interesting to
see how the artist chose another example of seeing to decorate this window. The
lady bathing stands on a chauki (small platform), wearing sheer, translucent clothing
that highlights her figure. She is wreathed in pearl, ruby, and emerald
ornaments, suggesting that she is a royal woman. The male figure nearby too
appears stately in his appearance and posture. The scene brings to mind the story
of Prince Vajramukuta and Padmavati from the text Vetalapanchavinshati, wherein,
as the prince watches Padmavati bath, he immediately falls in love with her.
Baggu Ji has
recreated the amorous environment of watching the beloved bath, on this
handmade woodwork in the Pahari idiom, making a home décor item a masterpiece.
Add this jharokha to your home and savor the romantic mood of Indian artwork.
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