The Theory of Citrasutras in Indian Painting: A Critical Re-evaluation of Their Uses and Interpretations

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Routledge, Jan 24, 2007 - Art - 208 pages

The study of technical treatises in Indian art has increasingly attracted much interest. This work puts forward a critical re-examination of the key Indian concepts of painting described in the Sanskrit treatises, called citrasutras. In an in-depth and systematic analysis of the texts on the theory of Indian painting, it critically examines the different ways in which the texts have been interpreted and used in the study of Indian painting, and suggests a new approach to reading and understanding their concepts. Contrary to previous publications on the subject, it is argued that the intended use of such texts as a standard of critique largely failed due to a fundamental misconceptualization of the significance of ‘text’ for Indian painters.

Isabella Nardi offers an original approach to research in this field by drawing on the experiences of painters, who are considered as a valid source of knowledge for our understanding of the citrasutras, and provides a new conceptual framework for understanding the interlinkages between textual sources and the practice of Indian painting. Filling a significant gap in Indian scholarship, Nardi's study will appeal to those studying Indian painting and Indian art in general.

 

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Contents

INTRODUCTION
1
1 THE TEXTS THEIR TRANSLATIONS AND INTERPRETATION
5
2 THE TRADITIONAL INDIAN CONCEPT OF PAINTING
17
3 SYSTEMS OF MEASUREMENT AND PROPORTION
37
4 TALAMANA AND LAMBAMANA SYSTEMS
64
5 STANCES HAND AND LEG POSTURES
87
6 ICONOGRAPHY
108
7 COLOURS PLASTER BRUSHES AND THE PROCESS OF PAINTING
120
CONCLUSIONS
154
DEPICTION OF ANIMALS
161
DEPICTION OF DESIGNS
162
DEPICTION OF BACKGROUNDS
163
GLOSSARY
165
NOTES
171
BIBLIOGRAPHY
182
INDEX
188

8 THE THEORY OF RASA
143

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