Maharana Bhim Singh (1768, r.1778-1828) of Mewar
by Chokha (at Mewar court)
circa 1810 CE
Gouache on paper
9.4 x 5.9 in. (23.9 x 15 cm.)
Back: “Shri Bhim Singh ji ri surat ro pano Chokha ro”
Chokha, the master painter from Mewar-Devgarh court is known as the most influential painter of his time. Chokha depicts his patron Maharana Bhim Singh in his full grandeur in this portrait. Maharana Bhim Singh is popular for his pompous lifestyle which he maintained even in the time of chaos and public unrest. A lover of arts, he commissioned some of the best known paintings from Mewar to the workshops of great masters Bagta and Chokha.
Chokha’s Bhim Singh figures, much like his other portraits, are modelled and have a certain tactility. Though the ruler’s expressions are static, the liveliness comes from the lavish apparel and accessories.
A crescent moon is delicately painted near the face of the Maharana, which is a symbol of respect to their deity Eklingji.