The city of Mandawa, founded in the mid 18th century, was once a town inhabited by the rich merchant families. The wealthy and dominant merchants constructed massive havelis, adorned with beautiful wall paintings, for the purpose of their residence.
The beautiful wall paintings that decorate the havelis of Mandawa in Rajasthan, India, have seen the themes changing from time to time. In the earlier days, mythology dominated the themes of the frescoes, displaying local legends, animals, portraits, hunting and wrestling scenes, etc. 19th century saw the themes being changed to reflect the British (Raj) influence on the Indian culture.
Places of Tourist Interests
Mandawa Fort :- Mandawa is a small town in the heart of Shekhawati region. The place is known not only for its havelis but also for its Fort Palace. The structure of the palace reminds of the cultural and social importance of this region in the past. Of the havelis, the most important are the Chokhani, Ladia, Binsidhar Newatia, and Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli. Another haveli, the Binsidhar Newatia Haveli, is known for its curious paintings. There is a painting of a boy holding a telephone and a European woman in a car driven by a chauffeur.
Bansidhar Nevatia Haveli :- The Bansidhar Nevatia Haveli shows the Wright Brothers' maiden flight and a European making a telephone call – presumably reproduced from magazines. A rather nationalistic tug-of-war between a strongman called Prof Ramamurti and a motorcar driven by an Englishman is also portrayed in a painting.
Nawalgarh :- Nawalgarh is one of the biggest and busiest towns of Shekhawati. Founded in 1737 by Nawal Singh, a son of Shardul Singh, Nawalgarh saw a series of rulers who managed, by dint of their sharp political acumen, to keep the state together as many of their neighbors gradually came apart. Therefore, it was able to attract a number of rich Marwari merchants who built many richly painted havelis here.
Haveli's :- The Gulab Rai Ladia Haveli,The Thakur Dedraj Tarmal Haveli, Neowatia Haveli, Laduram Haveli,Chokhani Haveli are famous for its erotic images, for there colourful frescoes.