A Colourful Pair of c.1900 Polychrome Carved Wooden Indian Architectural Supports


Origin: Indian
Period: Late Nineteenth / Early Twentieth Century
Provenance: Unknown
Date: c.1880 - 1900
Height: 30 & 31 inches (one with loss)
Width: 10 inches (at maximum)
Depth: 4.5 inches (at maximum)

The polychrome painted softwood supports carved and pierced as scrolling leaf and foliage with much of the original paint remaining, displaying vivid blues, reds, greens and yellows, terminating in oval top plinths and pegs to the other ends.

Condition is rather good, with some loss to the finial on one support and chips to each commensurate with age. The overall colours are very appealing, especially to one support in particular, and there is no signs of any worm or infestation and importantly the supports have not been restored or repainted in any way.

Part of the wonderful architectural jigsaw of colonial era India these supports were perhaps once part of a Mandapa, a pillared outdoor hall or pavilion for public rituals, or maybe as part of the external walls of a temple which was segmented by pilasters and carried niches housing sculpture. Studying the shape of these pieces further it is also very plausible they were the main supports under a small overhead balcony, the tops supporting the balcony floor and the bottom sides attaching to the side wall of the building.

Wonderfully evocative and superbly decorative, but also proving an intrinsic use, these supports would make a superb addition to a porch or balcony, or simply utilised as candle supports in a living area.