The Nautch Bungalow, Shalimar, Srinuggur

c.1864-65

The Nautch Bungalow stands in Shalimar Bagh, Kashmir built by Jahangir for his beloved wife Noor Jahan in 1616. The garden is one of the few surviving Mughal gardens, based on the Persian ‘charbagh’ style. Samuel Bourne, the photographer,  arrived in India in the 1860s and visited the Kashmir valley during his epic Himalayan photographic expedition.

Samuel Bourne was a banker with itchy feet. Paintings of India so enamoured him that he quit his job in Nottingham and arrived in Calcutta in 1863. Now regarded as one of the earliest travel photographers in the world, Bourne started exploring Indian landscapes in the hills of Shimla and spent months in Kashmir, returning with incredibly detailed images of the Himalayas and Gangotri glacier. He and fellow photographer Charles Shepherd set up studios across the country. Established first in 1863, Bourne and Shepherd was the most successful commercial firm in late 19th and early 20th century India, with outlets primarily based in Shimla, Calcutta and Bombay. In Calcutta, the studio was in business till as recently as 2016.

Title
The Nautch Bungalow, Shalimar, Srinuggur
Period
c.1864-65
Photographer
Samuel Bourne
Dimensions
H: 10.6 cm x W: 19.5 cm
Accession No.
2016.22.6