Portrait of the Hindus: Balthazar Solvyns & the European image of India, 1760-1824
Oxford University Press in asociation with Mapin Pub., 2004 - Religion - 568 pages
The Flemish artist Francois Balthazar Solvyns, who lived in Calcutta from 1791 to 1803, is little known, but his collection of etchings of the Hindus provide a rich and compelling portrait of India two hundred years ago. These remarkable prints, depicting the people of Bengal in their occupations, festivals, and daily life, and the accompanying descriptive text, are only available in rare book collections and have rarely been referred to by scholars of Indian culture and history. In Part I of this lavishly illustrated volume, Robert Hardgrave introduces Solvyn's life and work. Part II reproduces Solvyn's etchings and descriptions, with Hardgrave's detailed commentary. This book will make these invaluable images and writings generally available for the first time. It will be an important resource for those in South Asian studies and well as those interested in European artists in India and the European representation of the "other."
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