Lot#44 || Ravi Varma Embellished Oleographs (1848-1906)
(c 1930; c 1950)
Oleograph prints (c 1930) embellished with sequins (c 1950 by repute) Set of 6
19.00 x 13.00 in
₹ 1,00,000 -
Embellished oleograph prints attributed to Varma. Raja Ravi Varma was a commercially successful portrait painter in 19th-century India. He had even established a printing press to make prints of his canvases and these prints/oleographs gained widespread popularity. In the late 19th century, he began portraying Indian gods and goddesses when access to places of worship was limited to specific social classes. By producing affordable art prints known as oleographs, Varma made religious imagery accessible to people from various social classes and castes. The Ravi Varma Press was established by Varma in 1894 in Ghatkopar, Mumbai, and later relocated to Malavli near Lonavala in 1899. The press printed many of these oleographs. Despite Varma’s passing in 1906, the popularity of these prints endured. In subsequent years women throughout the country adorned Ravi Varma’s oleographs with fabric and glitter sequins and beads to then exhibit them on household walls. These embellishments made each artwork distinct and further enhanced its value.