Backdrops across painting and theatre

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Cheap prints from England, of pastoral British countrysides, of pornographic images, had begun circulating in India, becoming part of popular imagination. At the same time, local printing presses were also coming up with new images. The presses, sometimes run by arts students from the Government Arts Schools, were feeding Western styles into Indian iconography. Theatre which was hugely popular, had also begun to get some middle class legitimacy. Sometimes the styles of theatre backdrops- perhaps also influenced by these cheap western print images- would find their way into paintings.

So pine and other evergreens, Italian buildings.. started becoming part of both, theatre and painting backdrops. In both mediums, the subjects, familiar mythological figures, would enact their familiar stories, in front of these backdrops.

More middle class people started coming to the theatre, more middle class people started buying the new Romanised Indian imagees of Hindu gods and hanging them in their living rooms.

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