Govardhanlalji riding on an elephant during Vijyadashmi Procession

Govardhanlalji riding on an elephant during Vijyadashmi Procession behind father Tilkayat Girdharji

Attributed to Parasramji (active 1840-1880)
circa 1865

Opaque watercolour, gold and silver on paper
15.75 x 22.5 in. (40 x 57.2 cm.)

Every year on Vijayadashmi, the Tilkayat would be part of a grand procession which would culminate in the symbolic burning of Ravana’s effigy. Such events have been pictorially depicted by various artists.

This painting shows Tilkayat Girdharji atop the lead elephant and Govardhanlalji, still a child, on an elephant behind him. Preceding them are different platoons of soldiers in their employ; including a platoon of Europeans with bayonets and rifles. Alongwith riders on horses, camels and elephants, bearers carried empty palanquins. This is because elephants were able to travel only to a part of the way. On the final stretch of the procession, the people sitting on elephants would be transfered onto palanquins. One important aspect of the Vijayadashmi procession was the march-past of arms and cannons. All these elements of the procession have been vividly captured by the artist in this painting.

This painting is attributed to Parasramji who was head of the Art Department in the court of Maharana Swaroop Singh of Mewar from 1842 to 1861.