Madhya Pradesh

How to draw a tree like Sukhnandi Vyam

A member of the Gond-Pardhan community, Sukhnandi Vyam considers his art as an expression of the tribe’s identity and spiritual connection with nature

Untitled (Gond painting)

The Untitled Gond-Pardhan painting is an acrylic on canvas work, made by artist Rajendra Kumar Shyam. The artist paints a streak of tigers, seemingly running around in a loop. Two tigers appear to be adults, while the others look like cubs- one could presume that the artist has painted a family. Tigers are a common… Read more »

Hoshang Shah’s Tomb (Jama Masjid), Mandu

The photograph documents the north eastern profile of the structure known as the Tomb of Hoshang Shah, a powerful Pathan Sultan ruling the Kingdom of Malwa. A commanding structure in the 16th century, the tomb is seen here in a ruinous condition. The photo is mistakenly identified as the Jama Masjid of Mandoo because the… Read more »

Forgotten City of Joy

In a collaboration between Sarmaya and India Lost & Found, we admire the fading beauty of Mandu, home to the delicate Malwa style of architecture

Age of the Empires

The thrill of serendipity, the awakening of the imagination, the inevitability of being devoured heart and soul by a world you didn’t even know existed until this moment. In a way, being a student of history is like being an astronomer. Especially if the subject of study is an ancient or forgotten kingdom. Click to… Read more »

Jahaz Mahal, Mandoo

This photograph documents a close up of the facade of the Jahaz Mahal or the ‘Ship Palace’ at Mandoo (Mandu) in Madhya Pradesh. The main entrance to the fortress called the Delhi Darwaza leads directly to the Jahaz Mahal. The exact dates on which the palace was constructed are unknown, but historians attribute it to… Read more »

Empire of Faith: Into the realm of the Buddha & the Mauryas

Most Indians are familiar with the great emperors and exploits of the Mauryan empire. But until a few hundred years ago, their legacies lay buried in ruins, their faith forgotten by time. This is the story of a remarkable resurrection

Northern Gate of Sanchi Stupa

This photograph is of the Sanchi Stupa, which is one of the oldest and finest examples of Buddhist architecture synchronizing with the rise and fall of Buddhism in India. It was taken in 1882 by Lala Deen Dayal. The Sanchi Stupa is one of the oldest and finest example of the architecture of the Shunga… Read more »

Untitled

The Bhils are one of the oldest tribal communities of India, residing in western and central Indian states such as Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh. Like that of every other tribal community, the Bhil lifestyle is intricately connected with flora and fauna – as is clearly evident in the art they create. Bhil artists create… Read more »

Untitled (Horse Cart)

The Bhils are one of the oldest tribal communities of India, residing in western and central Indian states such as Gujarat, Rajasthan, and Madhya Pradesh. Like that of every other tribal community, the Bhil lifestyle is intricately connected with flora and fauna – as is clearly evident in the art they create. Bhil artists create… Read more »

Details on the top of the Northern Gate of Sanchi Stupa

The Sanchi Stupa is one of the oldest and finest example of the architecture of the Shunga era. It consists of a large hemispherical dome, which was built over another stupa that dated back to the 3rd century BC and was built by the Emperor Ashoka Maurya. The stupa was later extended around the 1st… Read more »

Unidentified group of women, Central India

This photograph of a group of unidentified women from central India was taken by PA Herzog and P Higgins. Herzog and Higgins were two Englishmen who worked in Central India. Herzog presumably learned the art of photography in Jabalpur from John Blees, who produced an instructional manual on the subject. Both Herzog and Higgins worked… Read more »

Shah Jahan, Silver Nisar Coin of Burhanpur Mint

Nisar coins are named for their main purpose, ie scattering into the crowd by royalty. They were deployed for occasions that demanded ceremonial generosity, like at investitures, weddings or grand entrances. These coins were particularly lightweight. In addition to the regular gold, silver and copper coins, Shah Jahan released unique silver Nisar coins to present… Read more »

Jungle Book

With each canvas, Durgabai Vyam takes us deeper into the forest of childlike fantasies

First of Her Tribe

The incredible story of how one woman went from laying bricks at an art centre to becoming one of its most celebrated artists

A Journey Through the Timeless Art of Handloom by Sally Holkar

Sally Holkar, a Stanford University graduate, discovered Indian handlooms when she married into the Indore royal family, traditional patrons of Maheshwari saree weavers. To further support the community, Sally co-founded REHWA Society, set up the WomenWeave Charitable Trust and established The Handloom School in Maheshwar. Sally has been instrumental in the revival of the Maheshwar… Read more »

Solo Tiger by Jangarh Singh Shyam

The Gond community is regarded as one of the oldest and largest surviving adivasi communities of India. The term Gond is derived from the word ‘Kond’ meaning ‘green mountains’; a majority of the people live in the lush forested regions of Madhya Pradesh, but there are also some Gonds to be found in pockets of… Read more »

Gond: Maindo Mai

This is a Gond painting created in the tribal regions of Madhya Pradesh. A ritualistic mural tradition of the Gondi tribe, Gond paintings are done on paper with synthetic colours now. This image created by Rajkumar Shyam depicts a tribal goddess called “Maindo Mai”. She holds a broom and a trident in her two arms,… Read more »

Gond: Deer with Foxes

This is a Gond painting created in the tribal regions of Madhya Pradesh by Durga Bai in her signature style of small dashes, which replace continuous lines. It depicts two symmetrically placed deers, facing against each other and looking at a smaller animal, which look like blue foxes, on their backs. The stags have horns… Read more »