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    Sale 2271

    Indian and South East Asian Art: Including Highlights from the Star Collection

    20 March 2009, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 1313

    A painting from the Mahabharata: Balabhadra fighting Jarasandha


    Price Realised  


    A painting from the Mahabharata: Balabhadra fighting Jarasandha
    India, Kangra or Garhwal, circa 1810-20
    With Krishna in his yellow dhoti at lower left, Balabhadra depicted five times speaking and fighting with King Jarasandha, the army to the right and several onlookers in the background, all surrounded by red and blue borders, some figures with annotations
    Opaque pigments and gold on wasli
    12 7/8 x 17½ in. (32.7 x 44.4 cm.)

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    Jarasandha, the king of Magadh, decided to attack Mathura to avenge the murder of his son-in-law, Kamsa (see lots 1346-1348 for further explication). Knowing that Mathura could not withstand his army, Krishna and Balarama challenged Jarasandha to a personal duel instead. Jarasandha was fearful of Krishna's strength, so to avoid him while saving his own ego, he called Krishna a child and not worthy of a duel. However, he did agree to Balarama's challenge and was soundly defeated while Krishna obliterated his entire army. The last repetition of Balarma (also known as Balabhadra) and Jarasandha, which shows them seated at bottom, is the moment in the story when Krishna has intervened in their duel to spare Jarasandha's life.


    Doris Wiener Gallery, New York
    Collection of Melissa W. Banta, circa 1970

    Pre-Lot Text

    Property from the Collection of Charles W. Banta