Loving Couple with Attendant (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

18th century
Tamil Nadu, India
Overall: 23 1/2 × 12 × 4 1/4 in. (59.69 × 30.48 × 10.8 cm)
Many Hindu temples in South India own large wooden carts used to carry moveable images of the gods in procession on major festival days. The exteriors of these vehicles are covered with carved relief panels depicting a wide range of subjects, mostly either episodes from Hindu mythology or secular courtly scenes.

This relief depicts one of Indian art's most ubiquitous themes, the loving couple. A courtly male wearing elaborate jewelry and a tall headdress sits on a large couch. He caresses his partner's breast while tugging on her long braid. Her right hand also reaches around to touch his hair. A female attendant stands by, aloofly fanning the loving couple.
Adolph D. and Wilkins C. Williams Fund
Dye, Joseph M. The Arts of India: Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. London: Philipp Wilson, 2001. (cat. no. 62, p. 173)
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

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