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  • Place of origin:

    Garhwal (made)

  • Date:

    ca. 1775 - ca. 1790 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:


  • Materials and Techniques:

    Painted in opaque watercolour on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Physical description

Painting, in opaque watercolour on paper. Sudama sits with his wife who urges him to seek Krishna's help as he holds his hands to his ears in horror. Behind them is their home and a fence of wood. Around them are symbols of their poverty - cow dung cakes drying on the walls, empty pitchers, a broken spinning wheel and basket, datura weeds springing from the green courtyard, a thatched roof with gaping holes. They are discussing Sudama's plan to seek out Krishna in his palace, offer him all they have (a handful of rice) and implore his favour.

Place of Origin

Garhwal (made)


ca. 1775 - ca. 1790 (made)



Materials and Techniques

Painted in opaque watercolour on paper


Length: 185 mm, Width: 265 mm, Length: 215 mm with border, Width: 295 mm with border

Object history note

Purchased from the Eric Dickinson collection in 1952.

Descriptive line

Painting, Sudama's hovel, painted in opaque watercolour on paper, Garhwal, ca. 1775-1790

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

p. 113, cat. no. 7 i
Indian paintings from the Punjab Hills : a survey and history of Pahari miniature painting / by W. G. Archer ; foreword by Sherman E. Lee. London :Delhi: Sotheby Parke Bernet ;Oxford University Press, 1973 Number: 0856670022

Labels and date

From a Krishna-Sudama series
Opaque watercolour on paper
Garhwal, Punjab Hills
c. 1775-90
Sudama, a poor villager, has fallen on bad times and faces starvation. His wife urges him to seek the help of his boyhood friend Krishna with whom he has lost touch. He puts his hands to his ears in horror but is persuaded to go. The picture includes symbols of their poverty such as the broken spinning wheel and basket, and the oval cowdung cakes for fuel. [27/9/2013]


Opaque watercolour; Water-colour; Paint; Paper



Subjects depicted

House; Pitchers; Weeds; Hovel


Paintings; Religion; Hinduism; Bonita Trust Indian Paintings Cataloguing Project; Architecture


South & South East Asia Collection

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