Tuesday, 29 January 2013

A trip to Mughal India at the British Library

A few weeks ago i was spending a bit of time in London with my family, my parents were on their first visit to the UK since moving to Delhi in the summer, so it was really good to see them and hear all about their adventures. My dad was really keen to go to the Mughal India, Art, Culture and Empire exhibition at the British Library so i tagged along. I was not really sure what to expect, but it was definitely not to be as fascinated and impressed as i was for the nearly three hours we managed to spend in there. It also really added to the experience to get some of the context, both historically and geographically (i.e. I've been there!) from my dad.

I found an overwhelming wealth of inspiration. Some of the images contained entire narratives, documenting both historical events and mythical stories. The level if detail in some of the images was amazing, and I particularly loved the use of decorative pattern, both within images - fabrics, plants, the incorporation of architecture etc -  and in the ornate borders which complimented the paintings.

It was interesting how contemporary some of the images seemed, particularly the stylised portraits, and the colour palettes which were so fresh and yet rich. I could see where other illustrators i admire such as Delphine Jaquot, Aurelia Fronty and Jane Ray might have drawn inspiration from too.

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