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Indian film hoarding - Mughal-E-Azam


  • Object:

    Indian film hoarding

  • Place of origin:

    London (made)

  • Date:

    2002 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Balkrishn Arts (makers)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Oil paint on canvas

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

The title runs across the top of the hoarding. On the left hand side is an image of the Prince and his true love hugging. On the right is a portrait of the Prince's father, the Emperor dressed in armour and in the middle ground between the two is a small scale sketch of an army.

Place of Origin

London (made)


2002 (made)


Balkrishn Arts (makers)

Materials and Techniques

Oil paint on canvas


Height: 2 m, Width: 5.5 m

Object history note

This hoarding by Balkrishn Arts was commissioned by the V&A as part of the' Cinema India: The Art of Bollywood' exhibition (25 June to 6 October 2002). Two artists from the studio, Ujjwal and Balkrishn Vaidya were invited to the V&A to demonstrate their artwork. This along with two other hoardings were completed on site between 24-30 June 2002.

Labels and date

Hoarding painters

Film hoardings adorning streets and cinema fronts with their large bold images are a characteristic of the city. Hand-painted hoardings used to be a primary form of film advertising. M.F. Husain, one of Indian's most important contemporary artists, famously began his career as a hoarding painter. Today this is a dying art which is gradually being replaced by computer-generated images. ( Photographs courtesy of Jonathan Torgovnik)

Balkrishna Arts

The workshop of this family-run firm is in a tiny gully off a main road in Bombay (Mumbai). Here, they produce traditional hand-painted hoardings measuring as much as 10 feet in height by 20 feet in width. The painters make rough sketches of the design using films stills for reference. Once this has been approved, the canvas is prepared, the design is scaled up on to the large canvas using a grid system, and painted. Transferring a small-scale design through to completion of the painting takes 1-2 days. Balkrishna Arts is one of a handful of firms still practising this art form. []


Oil paint; Canvas




South & South East Asia Collection

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