Krishna and Radha (Primary Title)

Unknown (Artist)

ca. 1760–80
Works On Paper
opaque watercolor on paper
India,Rajasthan, Kishangarh
Sheet: 7 1/2 × 5 3/4 in. (19.05 × 14.61 cm)
Mat: 20 × 16 in. (50.8 × 40.64 cm)
Not on view
Though early textual sources make only brief mention of a favorite gopi, later devotional literature overflows with accounts of Krishna’s adored Radha. Their love began when they were young children and later erupted into a highly charged passionate affair. Metaphorically, their frequent trysts in the forest reference the soul’s (Radha’s) ardent desire for union with God (Krishna). In the dreamlike style practiced by artists from Kishangarh, this painting depicts Krishna, Radha, and one of her companions meeting in a glade. The yellowish greens of the ethereal palette, the otherworldliness of the lovers’ elegantly stylized faces, and the seeming weightlessness of their longrobed bodies perfectly capture the transcendent qualities of the divine relationship.
Nasli and Alice Heeramaneck Collection, Gift of Paul Mellon
Image released via Creative Commons CC-BY-NC

Some object records are not complete and do not reflect VMFA's full and current knowledge. VMFA makes routine updates as records are reviewed and enhanced.