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Rani and Malka: Royal Women in South Asia

October 20, 2019 - August 31, 2020
Manuscript Gallery, Shangri La

The royal women of greater South Asia - rani signifying "queen" in Hindi, and malka in Urdu - have been the subjects of a wide range of paintings depicting their quotidian routines as well as their rarified roles in sacred and secular celebrations. In this series of folios, women of the courts are being waited on by attendants, while traveling and/or relaxing, and almost always in the presence of - or interacting with - other women. Depictions of female-centered spaces in which women held primary roles would have been familiar to the courtly patrons who commissioned and owned these paintings as many of whom were female.

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