Pahari School Ramayana Drawings of Ayodhya Kanda: Parallels between Painting and Film Language
A talk by Professor Ratan Parimoo, Director, LD Museum of Indology was organised at the Centre for Heritage Management, Ahmedabad University on his ongoing research on 'Pahari School Ramayana Drawings of Ayodhya Kanda (c.1790 - 1800 A.D.) '. the focus of the talk also involved similarities with 'story-board' - a cinematic tool for filming. Pahari School Ramayana Drawings of Ayodhya Kanda is a newly discovered set of line drawings by Professor Ratan Parimoo from the Kasturbhai Lalbhai Collection at Ahmedabad. These unseen drawings give a day to day account of unfolding events of the entire Ayodhya Kanda (chapter). The painter, like a theatre director and cinematographer, takes the viewer through a yatra (pilgrimage) where the drawings turn into a visual travelogue. The folios are placed in a frame by frame chronological time sequence, resembling the moving cinematic language, especially the 'camera work'. Like the film medium, the characters are placed in a situation and setting called 'mis-en-scene', a common factor with the medium of painting. Another feature shared between film and painting media, is the technique of 'story-board', when the Film Director makes a page by page sketches on paper regarding how he visualises the scene by scene shooting. Undoubtedly these drawings stand as a grand scale pictorialisation of a rich and kernel story of India's past heritage. This group of 62 folios should be of much interest to those studying Film and Animation, besides artists, art historians, theatre persons, dancers, story writers, and literature and mythology lovers.