Dipak Raga

Accession Number

Dipak Raga


Artist Nationality
Indian (South Asian)

Object Creation Date
circa 1800

Medium & Support
ink, watercolor, and gold on paper

13 5/8 in x 9 1/2 in (34.61 cm x 24.13 cm)

Credit Line
Gift of Professor Walter M. and Nesta R. Spink

Subject matter
Ragamala paintings draw from aspects of human experience in order to visualize specific moods, emotions, and qualities such as love, anguish, valor, weakness, and strength. A raga in Indian music is a melody consisting of a string of notes in a particular arrangement. Raginis are derivations from or variations of ragas in feminine mode (the basis of these classifications remains unexplained in many cases), and could have different or similar musical structures as ragas. Specific ragas are associated with specific times of the day, seasons, and emotions. When visualized, as here, ragas and raginis are meant to evoke the same affective responses that are allied to their musical modes. The text above the illustration refers to stories or incidents associated with the depicted raga/ ragini, but may not necessarily be narrative-like or descriptive. Drawn from literary tropes and tales that sophisticated writers and viewers would be aware of, the inscriptions are an integral part of the overall experience of this miniature painting. An illiterate viewer, however, could still enjoy the scene without reading the text.

Dipak ragas center on themes of light, lamp, or fire. This painting depicts lovers sitting outside under the night sky with three lamps nearby. 

Physical Description
This miniature painting is placed on a beige background within a geometric border. Text is placed within a cartouche at the top of the page and above the painting, as is typical of the Jaipur style. In the center of the painting, Krishna and Radha are seated closely together on a rectangular carpet. Three female attendants are tending to the couple to their left while another female attendant peeks behind a red curtain in the backgroud. 

Primary Object Classification

Collection Area

If you are interested in using an image for a publication, please visit http://umma.umich.edu/request-image for more information and to fill out the online Image Rights and Reproductions Request Form. Keywords
Amber (Mughal style)
Rajasthani (culture or style)
Text-based Art
miniatures (object genre)

3 Related Resources

Art of the Mughal Empire
(Part of 3 Learning Collections)
Miniature Paintings Across Cultures 
(Part of: Visual Cultures of Islam )

& Author Notes

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