Maharaja Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV

by Raja Ravi Varma
(inclusive of taxes)

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Year: Early 1900s
Medium: Oleograph
Size: 21.75 x 15.5 inches (Framed)
Signature: Bottom Right


This is an oleograph of his highness Krishnaraja Wadiyar from the early 1900s. It has been created at Raja Vijaya Press, Ghatkopar. Maharaja Krishnaraja Wadiyar IV (1884 –1940) was the twenty-fourth maharaja of the Kingdom of Mysore, from 1894 until his death in 1940. He is popularly called "Rajarshi”, a name given to him by Mahatma Gandhi, which literally means "the sage king" for his administrative reforms and achievements. He was an encouraging patron of Ravi Varma and commissioned him to paint the famous mythological paintings which originally adorned the Durbar Hall of the Mysore Palace and now are displayed in the Jagan Mohan Palace, Mysore. The Maharaja is pictured here in his full ceremonial dress with a part of the Mysore palace in the background.
  • ABOUT Raja Ravi Varma

    Raja Ravi Varma (1848-1906) was a celebrated Indian artist, famous for his realistic portrayal of Indian gods, goddesses and mythological characters, in scenes adapted mainly from the Mahabharata, Ramayana and the Puranas.

    Considered to be one of the greatest painters in the history of Indian art, Ravi Varma fused European techniques with a pure Indian sensibility. Though a protégé of royalty, Raja Ravi Varma was the first to make prints (or lithographs) of his artworks affordable and easily available, bringing fine art to the masses. In fact, the Raja Ravi Varma Press was started in Mumbai by him in 1894, and managed by his brother Raja Varma, before being bought over by a German company. 

    An original 1890 Ravi Varma oil on canvas, titled 'Radha In The Moonlight' was sold for a whopping Rs. 20 crores at a Pundole auction in November 2016.

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  • ABOUT Oleographs

    Oleographs, also called chromolithographs, are multi-colour art prints, stemming from the process of lithography. Pioneered in the 1830s, the process of producing oleographs came into wide commercial use in the 1860s. The technique relied on using several woodblocks or stones with colours for printing, while hand-colouring remained an important aspect as well. Depending on the number of colours present, an oleograph could take months to produce by very skilled workers. Poor preservation and cheaper printing alternatives have made oleographs hard to find. Today, they are mainly used as fine art.

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