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Company School Paintings Company School Paintings A.H. MULLER (1878 - 1952)
BAMAPADA BANERJEE (1851 - 1932)
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Private Collection, New Delhi
This painting by the artist Archibald Herman Muller exemplifies the best of his creative attributes as an accomplished landscapist and mythologist. The painting depicts the moment of stunned silence between two besotted individuals indubitably suggestive of King Dushyant and Shakuntala. Their mesmerized stillness is further enhanced by the sereneness of the glowing ethereality of the surrounding ladndscape.
Twentieth century Indian Art saw a significant development through mythological subjects in every creative form, be it Art, Theater, Music or Film. Theater being the rage of the time naturally captured the imagination of the existing generation of artists which explain the distinctive representation of stylized drapery and costumes along with the use of landscape as backdrop to the main characters in the forefront of the painting. Contrary to this norm Muller paid lot of attention in his treatment of landscape thereby uplifting it from a minor setting to be an intrinsic part of the actual painting as is illustrated by this exceptional piece by him.
Revered for his academic realistic style of painting, Muller, travelled extensively through the variant landscapes of Northern and Western India which he masterfully translated into his canvases. This elucidates his rendering of the bright sun scorched landscapes of which he was a master. Muller was earnestly sought by the Royal households of India for his grand depictions of historical and mythological subjects and portraiture.