• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 2112

    The Scholar's Vision: The Pal Family Collection

    20 March 2008, New York, Rockefeller Plaza

  • Lot 308

    A group of four polychromed wooden figures of characters from Kathakali Dance

    INDIA, KERALA, 1900-1950

    Price Realised  

    A group of four polychromed wooden figures of characters from Kathakali Dance
    India, Kerala, 1900-1950
    Including Venugopala and Bhima from the Mahabharata, remarkably detailed with masks, costumes and lively attitudes
    16½ in. (42 cm.) high max.


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    The name Kathakali derives from the Malayalam words "katha" (meaning story) and "kali" (meaning play).
    Traditionally there are 101 classical Kathakali stories, most of which were initially composed to last a whole night. Characters with vividly painted faces and elaborate costumes, such as the ones worn by these figures, re-enact stories from the mahabharata and Ramayana.