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Game of Cards by The Lotus House
Framed Ganjifa Paintings from Mysore




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THE STORY
Ganjifa or Ganjeefa was a popular card game in ancient India. Played extensively in the Mughal period, Ganjifa is now known more for the art work on the cards than the game itself. Cards made for royalty were inlaid with precious stones and were also made of ivory, mother-of-pearl and wafers of lac. Presented here is a collection of framed paintings carrying traditional Ganjifa work created by artisans in Mysore, Karnataka. In Mysore, this game was known as "Chadd" (God's play). The cards are generally circular and sometimes rectangular in shape with lacquered backs with exquisite paintings on them. Ganjifa cards are circular or rectangular, and traditionally hand-painted by artisans. Typically Ganjifa cards have coloured backgrounds, with each suit having a different colour. Different types exist, and the designs, number of suits, and physical size of the cards can vary considerably. The backs of the cards are typically a uniform colour, without patterning.