Puppet of Dasaratha

Puppet of Dasaratha

early 19th century
Locale
Andhra Pradesh Province
Country
India
shadow puppet
ink and color on leather
Anonymous Gift
1985.660
. Puppet of Dasaratha. early 19th century. ink and color on leather. Anonymous Gift. 1985.660.
Dimensions
height: 60 in, 152.4000 cm; width: 24 in, 60.9600 cm
Department
Asian
Collection
Asian
Puppet of Dasaratha India, Andhra Pradesh late 1700-early 1900s, Rajput dynasty Ink and color on leather Anonymous gift 1985.660 This is a representation of Dasaratha, the mortal father of the god Rama and King of Ayodhya, and was probably used in shadow puppet plays of the epic Ramayana. Backlit and projected against a white cloth screen, the figure with his colorfully decorated robe and exaggerated facial expression would create a striking effect for the audience. Shadow plays of the Hindu epics are still performed by traveling puppeteer troupes in South India, though, sadly, the art form is losing out to the popularity of the cinema and television.
Known Provenance
1972-1985, anonymous collector, purchased in Madras; 1985, DAM collection, anonymous gift.

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