4. A Group of Polychrome Terracotta Figures
India | c. 1880
A GROUP OF 11 POLYCHROME TERRACOTTA FIGURES
Second half 19th Century.
Approx. height: 4 ¾” (12cm).
Each figure is labelled with a description of the owner’s occupation or position in society as follows:
Pani wallah, Parsi, Postman, Bearer of valet, Ayah or maid-servant, Office Bearer, Indian Prince, Calcutta Policeman, Fruiterer, Sadhu or Ascetic Dhobi or washerman.
Made by native craftsmen in Bengal, an area where figurative modelling flourished from the early 18th Century, these naturalistically modelled figures are representative of everyday life in British India. Although often obtained as souvenirs they were also acquired by museums for educational purposes.