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Funeral Procession, Probably Late 18th century, Artist unknown, Oil on Canvas, 54”x81”

Funeral Procession, Probably Late 18th century, Artist unknown, Oil on Canvas, 54”x81”
Funeral Procession, Probably Late 18th century, Artist unknown, Oil on Canvas, 54”x81”

Location: Rashtrapati Bhavan Museum Ph-II

According to the 1931 catalogue, the painting represents a funeral procession which was a typical feature in Northern China under the Qing dynasty. The foreground shows the house of the person who has died towards the left of this composition. The women of the house stand in front, in an expression of sadness.

With receding mountains and trees represented at calculated points, this painting displays melancholy. The deceased person is being taken in a decorated blue coffin with mourners painted in white garbs behind it. The heads of these mourners are bent forward showing solidarity, carrying wands significant to their offices.

In a rhythmic movement, other persons are seen preceding the coffin, holding banners of various types to honour the soul. Dressed in traditional Chinese attire, all the forms represent a subtle charm in their colour scheme which is further realised by an overall subdued palette of this composition. Towards the right is seen an empty sedan chair with a tablet mentioning the name of the deceased. Several objects such as paper figures, articles representing mountain of gold and mountain of silver are being carried by the people in this funeral procession.

The research and compilation of the E- Catalogue has been realised by Shri VenuRajamony- Press Secretary to the President of India and Ruchi Kumar- Research Associate.
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