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Kalamkari Temple Hangings


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The V&A has the world's most important collection of nineteenth-century temple hangings from South India, but only one of the smaller pieces has ever been published. For the first time these amazing objects have been documented and made public. The hangings are of two main types: large narrative pieces from Andhra Pradesh which tell stories from the Ramayana, the exploits of Krishna or tales connected with South Indian deities, and smaller pieces from Tamil Nadu. A single extraordinary Ramayana hanging from Sri Lanka is also included. All of the pieces are illustrated in their entirety, along with ample details that highlight the remarkable skill and regional styles of the narrative artists.

Each piece is accompanied by a brief summary of its story, but the full 'frame-by-frame' narrative is described in a separate illustrated catalogue section. This detailed section will also provide translations of all the Telugu and Tamil inscriptions that accompany the narratives, translated especially for this project. As well as the description of the pieces themselves, there will be a general introduction about how such pieces were used and their regional stylistic variations and a chapter on technique and how they fit into the broader picture of Indian textiles, by V&A curator Rosemary Crill.


Anna L. Dallapiccola




22.6cm x 2.5cm x 28.8cm



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