AGE: – Mid 1970’s
CONSTRUCTION: – Calico cloth
DESCRIPTION: – Wayang Style Kamasan Painting With Ramayana Scenes
HEIGHT: – 84cm
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Mid 1970’s Wayang Style Kamasan Painting Ramayana Scenes from Bali showing multiple scenes, each separated by stylized brown formations lacking perspective perspective. The scenes are depictions of events that take place in the famous classical Hindu epics Ramayana and Mahabharata, each scene telling their own story. The characters within these paintings are also the same characters depicted in the Wayang style puppet shows, popular in both Java and Bali.
Typically the scenes in this style of painting are generally a little chaotic with nothing standing out that would be meaningful for the foreign audience, but to those who are familiar with the Ramayana and Mahabharata they will recognise some of the characters within the scenes.
This style of painting originated from East Java’s Majapahit Empire from the 13th to 16th Century, expanding into Bali in the latter part of the 13th century. From the 16th to 20th century the village of Kamasan, the kingdom of klungkung in east Bali was the centre for classical Balinese art, thus the name Kamasan paintings.
The courser animals in this style of painting have pointed teeth and large mouths and the demons have fangs. Animals are normally shown in profile whereas the humans are seen in a three quarter view with the chest and shoulders facing the viewer with the feet and legs seen from the side.
Demons are painted darker than humans. Noble male eyes have the top part of the eye curved and the bottom part a straight line. For females, it is the reverse. The outside border of the paintings resembles a carved wooden frame next to an inner red stripe. These are all characteristic of traditional Kamasan style Balinese painting.