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Raja Ravi Varma (April 29, 1848- October 2, 1906) was an Indian painter who achieved recognition for his depiction of scenes from the epics of the Mahabharata and Ramayana. His paintings are considered to be among the best examples of the fusion of Indian traditions with the techniques of European academic art.
Raja Ravi Varma is most remembered for his paintings of beautiful sari clad women, who were portrayed as very shapely and graceful. His exposure in the west came when he won the first prize in Vienna Art Exhibition in 1873. After a successful career as a painter, Raja Ravi Varma died in 1906 at the age of 58. He is generally considered as one among the greatest painters in the history of Indian art.
Raja Ravi Varma came to widespread acclaim after he won an award for an exhibition of his paintings at Vienna in 1873 . He travelled throughout India in search of subjects. He often modeled Hindu Goddesses on South Indian women, whom he considered beautiful. Ravi Varma is particularly noted for his paintings depicting episodes from the story of Dushyanta and Shakuntala, and Nala and Damayanti, from the Mahabharata. Ravi Varma's representation of mythological characters has become a part of the Indian imagination of the epics. He is often criticized for being too showy and sentimental in his style. However his work remains very popular in India and abroad.
List of the prominent works of Raja Ravi Varma
Lady Lost in Thought
Damayanti Talking to a Swan
Arjuna and Subhadra
Lady with lemon
Lord Krishna as Ambassador
Jatayu, a bird devotee of Lord Rama is mauled by Rawana
Victory of Indrajit
Family of Beggers
A Lady Playing Swarbat
Lady Giving Alms at the Temple
Lord Rama Conquers Varuna
Draupadi Dreading to Meet Kichaka
Shantanu and Matsyagandha
Shakuntala Composing a Love Letter to King Dushyanta
Girl in Sage Kanwa's Hermitage (Rishi-Kanya)
Saint Gregorios of Parumala