A pictorial survey of the rich use of floral motifs in the details of India’s architectural wonders, depicted through Henry Wilson’s photographs and drawings
Following the success of Pattern and Ornament in the Arts of India, Henry Wilson has turned, for this companion volume, to a single theme. But what a theme: the variety of floral motifs in the exquisitely wrought details of India’s architectural wonders is boundless, and one can only marvel at the way in which the basic elements of wood, stone and plaster have been transformed into masterworks of decorative art.
From the illustrious Mughal Empire during its greatest period of monument-building and artistic creativity to the time of British rule, which brought with it an unprecedented period of peace that allowed great wealth to be concentrated on the arts, the richness of India’s architecture is overwhelming.
Henry Wilson’s fine photographs reveal the skill, patience and imagination of the many thousands of craftsmen who have turned to floral motifs and rendered them with precision and life-enriching creativity. Juxtaposed with the photographs are Wilson’s own detailed drawings, all created by hand but with a stencil-like clarity that helps us understand the original historical patterns.
The result is an invaluable sourcebook that will appeal not only to those interested in one of the world’s oldest civilizations and greatest cultures, but also to anyone seeking inspiration for their own creations.
Henry Wilson is well known as a photographer of architecture and interiors, with a special interest in India. He is the author of many books, including Benares, India Contemporary and Pattern and Ornament in the Arts of India, all published by Thames & Hudson. His drawings of Indian motifs inspired Osborne & Little to commission from him the Sariskar Collection of wallpaper designs.