Subject : Shivaji Maharaj's Procession after his enthronement
Artist : Shri Prabhatsinh Modbhai Barhat
Art has it's own very important place in Indian traditions. Two man objections of art have been 'art for art's sake' and 'art for life's sake'. However Indian traditions have given more significant tools 'art for life's sake'. When one examines and studies the histories of various parts like literature, sculpture, architecture, music, painting among others one discovers evidences of the fact that people have honored that art only which has contributed to the rise, progress and cultural awareness of humanity. In fact paintings have contributed significantly to the documentation of historical matters also. A number of famous paintings have been taken into consideration for documenting historical event of various countries. One can cite many example here. Mine is a humble endeverer in the same direction i.e. putting in real from one of the golden chapters of Indian History.
Having made a deep study of various significant events in the Indian history in order to choose for the subject of the painting the most important event, I arrived at choosing the grand procession of Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj, having from the castle of Raigarh soon after Maharaj's coronation ceremony. The prime intention for choosing this only as the subject is the reveal several historical facts in their true colours.
In the depth study of Indian history reveals the fact that of all The important figures of the time only Chhatrapti Shivaji Maharaj has contributed the most in creating national character/awareness in the country and has thus done a lot for rising the honor of the nation. Born in an ordinary 'Jagirdar' family, Shivaji on the strength and vision of his own restored Hindu rule. he fought with Adilshahi, Moghalshahi, Kutubshahi, and Europeans successfully by virtue of his military and political expertise. He made the best use of the courage, Chivalry and the sense of dedication of the 'Malva' people. He met his contemporaries kike King Jaysinh, King Chhatrashal among others inspired them to fight against the outsider and foreigners and helped them whole heatedly in their a battle against the external forces. He met Sant Ramdas, Shri Tukaram and others supported their ideas and ideals, provided protection to religion and thus contributed in generating religious and spiritual awareness among the people. He brought about total transformation the system for governance and created a council of 8 ministers. In this way he could de-centralized the governors and reveal progressive and modern attitude towards the administration of the state. Thus in this regard Shivaji's role attains gather significance from the historical point of view. I have chosen for painting because of this reasons.
At present time the history which is taught in Scholl and colleges is largely destroyed one because it is written by the colonial rules who asked their so called historians to twist the facts and present the history with oblique motives. Thus they wanted to sustain their rules in India. Since the history is adulterated, if fails to provide a time picture of one culture. This ground picture of the coronations procession of Shri Chhatrapti Shivaji Maharaj among with documentary evidence shall provide sense of humor to the people and shall help them visualize the honourful part moreover. It would be instrumental in creating national identity and awakening across the country. I have strong faith in these regards.
From my childhoold itself I inherited in culturally important matters like literature, painting, embroidery,clay-craft, folk literature and history. I always did well and stood first in painting throughout my education. My teachers like Ravishanker Raval, Shri Rasikbhai Parikh, Shri Maganbhai Trivedi, Shri Nagjibhai Chauhan, Dr. Rameshbhai Bhatt etc.have contributed a lot in my progress.
From adolescence onwards the subject of my paintings used to be nature, folk traditions('vangmaya') and folk culture. In 1982, I had privilege of being with 'Padmashri' Dr. Vakankarji for twenty days. It was he who infect shaped my vision and art. He studied my pictures minutely and told me that my pictures revealed faithful and true portrayal of reality and time, which he found to be very important in historical paintings so he guided and inspired me to take a history for paintings. "Historical paintings demanded very good knowledge of horses, martial, communities, weapons and mindscapes among others" said Dr. Vankakarji. His words touched me so much that immediately I decide to work on historical subjects.
Late on for better study of the above mancened subjects, I look guidance from experts like Pandit Narendra Prasad Pandya, Dr. R.N. Mehta, Shri Chittawallah, Dr. S.V. Jani & Dr. C.N. Parture among others. On the bases of whatever I had learnt from these guides. I painted around 125 pictures and sought their options, comments and further guidance on them. Their positive response added to my enthusiasm and confidence. And then I started working on this major project. I devided my project into four stages for attending the best results as well as conventions. They are below.
First Stage :
At this stage I studied many books and volumes on Shivaji Maharaj. Morever I studied what is processions and it's nature along with Hindu, Muslim, Christian, and Chines view regarding the procession. Then I prepared a descriptive notes on How shall I portry artistically this grand and traditional procession of Shivaji Maharaj.
Second Stage :
At this stage, I visited many museums, libraries, castles, forts, historical places and people who are in knowledge of these matter. Some of the important places I visited are Votsom museum and language library Rajkot. The court hall of Junagadh state, museum Junagadh. Lakhota lake museum Jamnagar. The Aaina Palace Bhuj, the museum of lt. Shri Ramsinhji Rathod, Gujarat state museum, Kamati Bag museum and Pratap Palace museum Baroda, Mansinhji museum Jodhpur, Salarganj museum Hydrabad, The museum in Bombay, Deccen College museum, Pune, museum at Satara, Measure, Delhi archives I collect a lot of material from these places.
Morever to study castles I visited historical castles of Div, Modpar, Jodhpur,Deogiri, Aurangabad and Raigadh and collect a lot of information regarding them.Further in order to understand Indian paintings and sculpture, I visited the caves of Ajanta & Elora, historical places like Navlakhon and Ghumali near Porbander and collected information.
Third Stage :
On the bases of the above maintained stage having studied critically and analytically the information's collected I prepared a six inches wide pencil scatch. Then I prepared five fit wide and 500 fit long on tracing paper. In 1996 this picture was exhibited in Shri Shyamprasad Mukharji Art Gallery Rajkot. It was seen appriciated by large number of historians, painters, poets, sculptures and so on. More then thousands of people come to see this picture. More the 10000 people gave their appreciating response in writing. The dailiers, magazines, weeklies, and other media took a positive note of the exhibition and express their response.
Forth Stage :
This project which was initiated in 1994 and which constantly being pursued has now entered in it's last stage. This is the stage of painting colours in the picture.
It was thought earlier that a 15 inches wide picture on paper be prepared and than be drawn and 8 fit wide picture on canvas. On the bases of the picture on paper the same has been done. Almost all stages are over. All hardles are crossed. The data will pickup momentum now. The picture is expected to be complete at good speed.
At this stage, The prime hardless if at all are :
This thing demand money. This infrastuctural facilities are the real problem at present. Of coures all hardless are crossed whenever they have arrived. By the grace of God, this cultural project is going on and on. In way or the other, friends, well wishers and others have helped the project. I have full faith that in tueth also the project won't stop just because of the shortage of the means.
This picture is the result of lot of care,devotion, time, monetary, contribution, guidance of scholars and sangh "Sanskar".
I have only like that "silica" of Raghuvansham followed the work done by the predecessors. The way a thread follows a niddel and thus prepares a garland, I am only the thread following the needle that is the great man. This picture is like a garland. May it spreads it's fragrance all over the nation and inspire national consiciousness among our brethren.
Bharat Mata Ki Jay
Cultural and historical effect of this project :
This picture is not simply the future and destiny of the artist but the national and cultural future and it's destiny. Based purely on Indian traditions this picture will add to the glory of painting, the art. Years long dedicated persuade on the part of the artist shall bring glory to Bharat. At the same time it shell reveal our cultural broad mindedness. It will reveal the richness of Indian Culture and the fects of Indians history with creap self regard. This picture will have it's documentry value as well because it's accomplished only after grasping various documents and reference books. May this picture be a symbole of our cultural identity.
Such an epical work require lot of time, dedication, vision and craftsmanship of the artist which can't be measure by money. Yet money also place an important role in the realization of such a work. The expenditure already made os far is as below.
|1. Books and correspondence||25,000/-|
|2. field works||25,000/-|
|3. Instruments : Camera, Binocular etc.||15,000/-|
|4. Trussing papers, link etc.||10,000/-|
|(Rupees Seventy five thousands only)||
B. Expenditure yet to be done
|1. 8 X 500 meter good quality canvass||1,30,000/-|
|2. Processing - stretch white||20,000/-|
|3. Table for processing||20,000/-|
|4. Good quality colours||20,000/-|
|5. Machine stand that can bare the weight of the canvass and on which rolling can be done smoothly.||35,000/-|
|6. Contingency expenditure||25,000/-|
Total project 3,25,000/- (Three lakhs and twenty five thousands only)