The inscription on the verso reads:
mahant maharaj shri 108 shri narayan das ji
kalam chitara bhati shankar das shiv das ra ri hai
This confirms the sitter’s identity (Mahant Maharaj Shri Naryan Das) and the painter’s name, Bhati Shankar Das Shiv Das.
The artist has elegantly isolated the Maharaja's face by backing it with a golden halo and swathing the body in a monochromatic robe, leaving his features in relief. There is little doubt the artist is an accomplished painter in the Jodhpur royal atelier; compare with a depiction of a nath siddha from the Nath Charit, folio 1, in the collection of the Mehrangarh Museum Trust (see D.Diamond, et al., Garden and Cosmos: The Royal Paintings of Jodhpur, Washington DC, 2008, pp.174-177, cat.no.40). Both figures have elongated lotus-shaped eyes, heavy-lidded with the pupil identically placed and the eyelashes indicated by a single line extending to the top of the nose. The eyebrows are nearly identically arched, and the edge of the far eyebrow is visible in the profile. The noses are similarly beak-like, with flaring nostrils sitting above a small, smiling mouth. The profile completes with a swelling chin and jaw, softened in the present lot by the indication of facial hair. The simplicity of the environment enhances the feeling of seclusion in which the sitter seeks spiritual enlightment, echoing the mood in the vast compositions of the Nath Charit series.