The significance of the natural world in Indian Art

Nature as a setting for love and for love’s symbolic expression is an important theme in Indian art. The forests and rivers of pre-modern India represented a world of astonishing environmental beauty with diverse wildlife, one to which artists turned for inspiration in their search to express ideas of spiritual and worldly devotion.

The Enchanted Forest: Nature and devotion in Indian art explores the significance of the natural world for Indian artists over 500 years. The display features paintings, sculptures and textiles from the Gallery’s permanent collection. Among the highlights are contemporary Madhubani tribal paintings as well as a very rare fifteenth to sixteenth-century Indian textile depicting a forest scene, on display for the first time at the Gallery.