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Cover for Gates of the Lord

Gates of the Lord

The Tradition of Krishna Paintings

Madhuvanti Ghose (Editor), Amit Ambalal (Contributions by), Kalyan Krishna (Contributions by), Tryna Lyons (Contributions by), Anita B. Shah (Contributions by), Emilia Bachrach (Contributions by)


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The Pushtimarg, a Hindu sect established in India in the fifteenth century, possesses a unique culture—reaching back centuries and still vital today—in which art and devotion are deeply intertwined. This important volume, illustrated with more than one hundred vivid images, offers a new, in-depth look at the Pushtimarg and its rich aesthetic traditions, which are largely unknown outside of South Asia.
Original essays by eminent scholars of Indian art focus on the style of worship, patterns of patronage, and artistic heritage that generated pichvais, large paintings on cloth designed to hang in temples, as well as other paintings for the Pushtimarg. In this expansive study, the authors deftly examine how pichvais were and still are used in the seasonal and daily veneration of Shrinathji, an aspect of Krishna as a child who is the chief deity of the temple town of Nathdwara in Rajasthan. Gates of the Lord introduces readers not only to the visual world of the Pushtimarg, but also to the spirit of Nathdwara.

Art Institute of Chicago, 9780300214727, 176pp.

Publication Date: October 27, 2015

About the Author

Madhuvanti Ghose is the Alsdorf Associate Curator of Indian, Southeast Asian, Himalayan, and Islamic Art at the Art Institute of Chicago. Amit Ambalal is an artist, author, and collector of Nathdwara paintings living in Ahmedabad, India. Kalyan Krishna is a retired professor in the Department of History of Art at Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi, India. Tryna Lyons is a Seattle-based art historian who has published on the painting practices of Rajasthan. Anita B. Shah is a museum consultant living in Hyderabad, India. Emilia Bachrach holds a Ph.D. in Asian Cultures and Languages, with a focus on South Asian religions and literatures, from the University of Texas at Austin.