Ramayana by Uma Shankar Shah

Title: Ramayana

Medium: Aquatint Etching Print on Art Paper

Size: 20×40 inches

Year: 2017

$ 2,000.00

10 in stock

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Over the years, Uma Shankar Shah has established himself as one of Nepal’s foremost printmakers. Uma Shankar Shah hails from Janakpur in the fertile plains of the Terai which have been the centre point of great spiritual activity throughout history. Sita, the consort of Lord Ram was born in Janakpur, once the capital of the ancient Mithila Kingdom. The epic Ramayana is the inspiration for Uma Shankar’s series of prints titled Ramayan. The series documents the story of the artist’s hometown’s beloved princess, daughter of King Janak, Sita. In his prints, he chronicles her birth, her engagement with Lord Ram and the mighty bow, her marriage and her journey to Ayodhya, her subsequent exile into the forest with Lord Ram, her abduction, the search launched for her and the ensuing battle in which the demon Ravan is defeated. As the artist hails from Janakpur, his narrative and imagery are deeply rooted in Mithila tradition and folklore. The doe like eyes he uses to depict his characters are characteristic of Mithila art. Sita’swedding is depicted with a Kobarghar and the bride is carried in a traditional Mahapa palanquin—the backdrop reveals the classical bhitichitra motifs on the wall. In keeping with popular folk stories, fishes guide Sita’s boat as she journeys to her husband’s home. A dash of orange and blue offset the monotony of the brown tones and illuminates his prints. Uma Shankar portrays Ravanas the traditional firework puppet that is set alight in Dusshera to celebrate the victory of good over evil. Arrow dart across the battleground, the great beasts of war—elephants, horses and chariots—are featured amongst the dead and the wounded. The artist uses Ramayana slokas from Maithili, Awadhi, Bhojpuri, and Sanskrit to reverentially evoke the mood of this great epic.



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