The Story Of Indian Mona Lisa

4 months ago
54 in story

2_Attributed_to_Nihal_Chand._Savant_Singh_and_Bani_Thani_as_Krishna_and_Radha_(detail),_Kishangarh,_ca._1760._Madison_Avenue_gallery.jpg
Bani Thani

Hello Dear Friend,

Today I would like to present the tale of an Indian beauty, which is popularly known as Indian Mona Lisa. This parallel drawn with Leonardo Da Vinci’s painting is embedded in the very fact that an Indian school of painting developed around Bani Thani’s portrait.

4_Radha_(Bani_Thani),_Kishangarh,_ca._1750,_National_Museum_New_Delhi.jpg
Who is Indian Mona Lisa?
During the 18th century in Kishangarh state of Marwar kingdom of Rajputana, a courtesan named Vishnupriya came to be known as Bani Thani(one who is groomed). Bani Thani is popularly known as Indian Monalisa as court painter of Kishangarh Nihal Chand drew her portrait, which marks the beginning of the Kishangarh School of Painting.

What Is The Story of Bani Thani?

Bani Thani was introduced in Kishangarh court by King Sawant Singh’s mother; as a dancer. Sawant Singh was the 7th king of the kingdom. Sawant Singh was an acclaimed poet who wrote under pen name of Nagaridas. Apart from being a poet he had an inclination towards singers. Bani Thani was a beautiful dancer, singer and a proficient poetess. Sawant Singh's encounter with her was the beginning of their romantic story. Her beauty and her talent enamored Sawant Singh; she became Sawant Singh's courtesan. According to some chronicles, Sawant Singh later married her in 1740. It is said that she wrote under the pen name Rasikbihari.

Bani Thani was subject to Nihal Chand's painting. The portrait of her defined the features of Kishangarh school of Art. The eyes of the portrait were the main attraction of the painting, large curvaceous eyes with arched eyebrows became the signature style. It is said that Sawant Singh was captivated by eyes of Bani Thani and had asked Nihal Chand to draw them. Another theory for such eyes was that they were inspired by the eye of Srinathji; a cult of God Krishna.

The Bani Thani painting had features like elongated nose, beautiful lavish jewelry, traditionally dressed, crowned head. This painting was inspired by the sringar rasa nayika.

bani-thani-painting-5-500x500.jpg
The Kishangarh Radha

Kishangarh during the rule of Sawant Singh was under the influence of Krishna Bhakti. The Krishna Bhakti also inspired even the paintings of Bani Thani and Sawant Singh. It is due to this that Bani Thani came to be known as the Kishangarh Radha.

The painting of Bani Thani is imitated by local artist and is sold in markets. It is a must-have souvenir from India and Rajasthan.

Image Source:
https://upload.wikimedia.org

Authors get paid when people like you upvote their post.
If you enjoyed what you read here, create your account today and start earning FREE STEEM!
Sort Order:  trending
54
  ·  4 months ago

Ya I have heard and read about it she was indian mona lisa...preety very beautiful...;-)

50
  ·  4 months ago

no doubt mona lisa was very beautiful and very interesting story she has...

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you.

·
·
50
  ·  4 months ago

You welcome...

68
  ·  4 months ago

Congratulations! This post has been upvoted from the communal account, @minnowsupport, by rainsa from the Minnow Support Project. It's a witness project run by aggroed, ausbitbank, teamsteem, theprophet0, someguy123, neoxian, followbtcnews/crimsonclad, and netuoso. The goal is to help Steemit grow by supporting Minnows and creating a social network. Please find us in the Peace, Abundance, and Liberty Network (PALnet) Discord Channel. It's a completely public and open space to all members of the Steemit community who voluntarily choose to be there.

If you would like to delegate to the Minnow Support Project you can do so by clicking on the following links: 50SP, 100SP, 250SP, 500SP, 1000SP, 5000SP. Be sure to leave at least 50SP undelegated on your account.

60
  ·  4 months ago

she look damn gorgeous in the painting...superr...

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you.

28
  ·  4 months ago

Have you've heard the story of a monkey and god? I liked that one, also kinda of funny but cruel at the same time...

54
  ·  4 months ago

So this is one thing to look out for during the next trip to Rajastan!

67
  ·  4 months ago

This post has received a 1.06 % upvote from @buildawhale thanks to: @rainsa. Send at least 1 SBD to @buildawhale with a post link in the memo field for a portion of the next vote.

To support our daily curation initiative, please vote on my owner, @themarkymark, as a Steem Witness

55
  ·  4 months ago

Interesting read. Bring more from these culturally rich Rajasthan.

One ride from the inner roads of Rajasthan and I realized there are so many stories waiting to be unrevealed.

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Rajasthan is beautiful, good you are witnessing it.

51
  ·  4 months ago

Nice story

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you.

64
  ·  4 months ago

This image is absolutely lovely. I hadn't heard of it before. I'm excited to learn about it. :)

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you. Glad you like it.

59
  ·  4 months ago

Hi @rainsa , this is by far my very favorite post of the day. I am such a great fan of posts that allow you to find something, which you didn't know you were searching for. I am a great admirer off Indian traditions legends mystery and culture. I must also admit that I used to try to imitate Indian dances in front of the computer when I was younger.

Reading this beautiful story make me travel back to this time and shows me the infinite number of stories I'm not in the slightest aware off.

I would love to read way more of these kind of posts on steemit. I'm craving for these kind of articles. And I hope to read many many more of you, dear @rainsa .

Your blog post is my Christmas present from steemit. I'm so happy I stumbled over your post in this very late hour, things to #steemitbloggers .

Enjoy your evening, best wishes, Elena ✨🌙

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

This is such a lovely comment. You really made my Christmas. Thank you.

55
  ·  4 months ago

I have seen this style of line work in paintings of women, but never knew the source and who the model might have been! Thank you for uncovering the mystery and explaining her story! 😊

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you. So glad you liked it.

55
  ·  4 months ago

I'd heard slight inklings of the Indian Mona Lisa, but this is the first time I've seen the artwork. I could stare at that last portrait for hours (and not just because there's also a bird in the painting, and I'm a sucker for those feathered beauties...LOL). Wonderful stuff, @rainsa!

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you.

·
·
55
  ·  4 months ago

You're very welcome!

50
  ·  4 months ago

I'm embarrassed that I don't know about this lol.

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you. Glad you liked.

56
  ·  4 months ago

Bani Thani is Bani Thani no comparisons here.

Awesome piece very informative to those outside the art community.

·
54
  ·  4 months ago

Thank you. Glad to know you liked it.

59
  ·  4 months ago

What a lovely post, who doesn’t love art, history and beauty. Thank you for sharing. From york fellow steemitbogger, casandra

60
  ·  4 months ago

This is amazing 💎