Rare paintings relive the magic of Holi over centuries

March 13th, 2009 - 7:47 pm ICT by IANS  

Chandigarh, March 13 (IANS) As Holi signalled the advent of spring, the Government Museum and Art Gallery here welcomed the season by exhibiting rare miniature paintings, some of them over 300 years old, on the festival of colours.
“This is for the first time that we are displaying an exhibition related to Holi from our rare collection. Some of these paintings are over 300 years old made by legendary miniature painting artists of that era,” Navjot Randhawa, director of the museum, told IANS.

The exhibition of nearly 30 rare paintings on the theme “The Spring Festival - Holi” was inaugurated at the Government Museum and Art Gallery in Sector-10 Friday.

“The best feature of these old paintings is that all of them are self-explanatory. One can easily understand them in a single glance. They display different shades of Holi, the moods, costumes, relationship of people and the pranks played by youths of that time,” said Randhawa.

“Earlier, we had planned to hold this exhibition for only 15 days but seeing the enormous rush and spectators’ enthusiasm, we have extended it to one month,” he added.

“It is a great treat to visualise old stories associated with the festival of Holi through paintings made so long back. It gave us a chance to peep into the mindsets of the artists of that golden time when they were judged by the quality of work rather than its quantity,” said Sidhartha Sharma, a painter and a student of fine arts.

Added Radhika Jain, who also visited the museum: “I can really relate our present Holi celebrations with that time. I feel the only difference is in the costumes, otherwise the ritual of throwing water and colours on each other and the passion is still the same.”

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