Raja Ravi Varma was closely associated with the Parsi community from Mumbai and painted several portraits and scenes from their lives. This painting describes the Parsi wedding ritual and how the ladies in waiting are dressing the bride before the ceremony can commence. Ravi Varma and his brother C Raja Raja Varma were keen observers of various customs and rituals, which is apparent in the clothes and ceremonial objects that they painted and which are used during a Paris wedding.


  • Title: Decking the Bride
  • Creator: Raja Ravi Varma
  • Date Created: 1893
  • Location Created: Bombay, India
  • Subject Keywords: Parsi wedding
  • Original Source: Sri Chitra Art Gallery. On Loan to the Raj Bhavan, Thiruvananthapuram
  • Medium: Oil on Canvas
  • Depicted Topic: Parsi Wedding
  • Dimensions: 29" x 46"
  • Collection: Sri Chitra Art Gallery, Thiruvananthapuram
  • About the Artist: Raja Ravi Varma (1848-1906), India’s foremost artist, who took art to the masses, hailed from Kilimanoor, in the erstwhile state of Travancore. From a very young age, Ravi Varma, was drawn towards art, imbibing techniques from his uncle and mentor Raja Raja Varma and his mother, Umayamba Bayi, a poet in her own right. Varma was much sought after by the Royals and owing to his popularity and reputation, his spectacular and richly-textured works were prolific. His realistic portrayals of contemporary figures and interpretations of religious and mythological figures fetched him instant and enduring success, lifting his standing in the art world. If the Royals and his countrymen were in awe of this great talent, the international world was spellbound by his imagination and creativity. He ensured that art would be accessible to all, through reproductions of his paintings which were made available, and affordable to everyone.

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