Bundela Paintings Orchha

By Sanjeev Nayyar Sanjeev@esamskriti.com | 2020

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1. 16 kms from Jhansi is lovely Orchha. It is known for its Fort Complex. Raj Mahal, a palace in the fort has lovely paintings as does the Lakshminarayana Temple. As I entered Raj Mahal this is the first painting I saw. Below is water fountain above this painted ceiling. Pic covers entire ceiling, amazing.

2. Close up of side panel of ceiling. Bottom of pic u can see horses. Raj Mahal is well known for its murals depicting religious themes. The deeply religious Madhukar Shah built it in between 1554 and 1591.

3. Paintings inside one of the many rooms of Raj Mahal. In several rooms deities as Brahma, Vishnu, the Buddha, Rama, Krishna, Sita and Ganesh, plus Orchha royalty, wrestle, hunt, fight, dance, sit and lie their way across walls and ceilings in vivid, colourful murals.

4. Raj Mahal overview. Right behind where lady is standing is entrance to a room ie full of paintings.

5. Overview of room ceiling. What follows are close ups of these paintings..

7. It is Sagar Manthan, churning of the ocean. I also this at Bangkok Airport. See pic 32-35 https://www.esamskriti.com/a/Thailand/Hindu-symbols-in-Thailand.aspx

8. This looks like a scene from the Ramayana, with Hanumanji on right of the pic.

9. Please help with caption.

10. Top part of pic is ten avatars of Lord Vishnu.

11. Looks like various avatars (ten) of Lord Vishnu.

12. Left of pic man with axe in hand is Parashuram, sixth incarnation of Lord Vishnu.

13. Painting side panel.

14. Please help with caption.

15. Painting inside another room of the Raj Mahal..

16. Side panel, u can see horses and birds.

17. Looks like Queens with parrots or birds in their hands.

18. Close up view of panel of pic 15.

19. Ceiling painted same room.

20. This part of Raj Mahal is where the king met his subjects. This is ceiling painting.

21. Close up of ceiling, see birds and flowers.

22. Another ceiling painted same area.

23. You see Lakshminarayana Temple. It was built on an elevation and on a rectangular plan by Veer Singh Deo in 1622 and renovated by Prithvi Singh in 1793.

24. Top part Lord Vishnu sitting in the form of Yogi. Middle painting is Sri Krishna and Radha.

25. Soldiers on horses, seems like a war scene.

26. There is a long corridor. At one end is this painting. Extreme left is Goddess Lakshmi. Other Gods including Ganesha at end, in line for her darshan.

27. Another war scene. Because there is one person shown with many heads, could be Ravana.

28. This is the corridor with paintings on side panels and ceiling. Like this there is another corridor.

29. See centre panel. Left to right 1 is Sri Krishna dancing with gopis, dance form is called Raas, 2 is Ganesha with wives Riddhi & Siddhi, 3 is story of Sri Krishna tames a poisonous snake Kaliya. Read story of Kaliya Mardan https://www.tell-a-tale.com/kaliya-daman-krishna-tames-serpent-kaliya-indian-mythological-story/

30. Corner panel, men and women dancing. Centre is bird, could be peacock.

31. Looks like the Sri Krishna and Gopis scene, with Krishna on top of the tree.

32. The King is sitting in his palace & the Ministers are telling him news about every moment, what is going on outside the fort.

33. Fighting scene. Wish to thank Orchha based friends Vandana ji and Sunil ji for helping with captions.

34. Shesh Shahi Vishnu. Saw a similar work in stone in Chiang Mia, Thailand.

35. Seems like Ganesha in centre of pic.

36. Goddess Lakshmi is shown in many forms. The form in which she is sitting on a lotus is called Padma Lakshmi. The one who is assisted by elephant is called Gaja Laxmi.

37. War scene, with Ma Durga in the centre.

38. This scene belongs to the Ramayana. Shows Hanumanji went to Lanka to find Sita ji. There his tail was set on fire.

39. War scene.

40. British troops.

41. War scene lower part of pic.

42. Ceiling painting.

43. Hanuman with Sri Ram.

44. This is a mythical bird like a dinosaur of the area. They call it Chungal in Hindi. Chungal means to hold someone very tightly. This bird has the capacity to carry 7 elephants at the same time as shown in the picture. Orchha is a must visit esp in the winters. Am told it is lovely in the monsoons too. See Travel & Yatra section for travelogue on Orchha.

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