The Hall of Flowers

The windows of Phool Mahal

Inside the oyster of Mehrangarh is the pearl called Phool Mahal: the Hall of Flowers. Originally built in the mid 19-the century by Abhay Singh, the paintings that we see today come from the 19th century re-decoration carried out by Takhat Singh. I was blown away by the exquisite paintings and the colours of the audience hall.

The central court surrounded by gilded balusters and flutings are derived from the Mughal style of Shah Jehan’s era. The outer part, including the jaali and windows are typical of Marwar. Just below the gilded ceiling is a panel with royal portraits which runs all around the hall. This means that the room was probably used as a private audience hall for the raja to confer formally with ministers and local landholders. Below that is a series of raga mala paintings which use the iconography which had been standardized by the 19th century. This signifies that the place could have also been used for musical performances and less serious business of state.

By I. J. Khanewala

I travel on work. When that gets too tiring then I relax by travelling for holidays. The holidays are pretty hectic, so I need to unwind by getting back home. But that means work.


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