Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Saura Painting [Orissa]

This folk art painting is known as ‘Saura painting’. The ‘Saura’ tribe of Orissa makes these paintings. The theme of this folk painting has been drawn from their everyday life, showing several rows of human forms engaged in daily or ceremonial activities. In alternating set of rows, differing moods of dancing and warring people are portrayed. Seated on horses or elephants, men go on wars to protect the natural rhythm of life back home. At the base of the painting, we see men around a tree, signifying the close connection between man and nature.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Pithora Painting

Pithora Paintings are much more than colorful images on walls for the tribes of Rathwas, Bhilals, and Naykas of Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh . They signify the advent of an auspicious occasion (like weddings, childbirth, festivals) in the family or community. An art form, which essentially conveys the joy and celebration of a community, has to reflect the collective mood of it, and Pithora paintings with their colors and animated figures mirrors the sentiments of their creators.

The essence of a Pithora painting lies in its earthiness; everything from the theme to the execution has the ethnicity of rural India. Even materials used are quite exotic: the colors are prepared by mixing pigments with milk and liquor prepared from the auspicious Mahuda tree. Indeed the joie de vivre of the community couldn't have found a more suitable mean of expression.

The tribes

The tribes of Rathwas , Bhils and Nayaks of central Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh practice this Art form.

The Rathwas have a distinct cultural heritage and an interesting historical background. They mimic the upper caste of Tadagis in their way of life. They depend on the forests around them for a livelihood. The forests therefore are sacred for them. The family is the most important unit of this tribe and they practice arranged marriages, however clan exogamy is also observed. Their intrinsic aesthetics is evident in their quaintly done mud hits, which are adorned with colorful Pithora Paintings.

The ancient tribes of Bhils too practice this art form with meticulous diligence.

The Ritual called Pithora Paintings

Pithora Painting can be called a ritual rather that an art form for it is “performed” to thank God or for a wish or a boon to be granted. A comprehensive understanding of this ritual will call for a narrative- the head priest of the community who is called “Badwa”, is summoned when a problem occurs in a family. The problems are narrated to the Badwa “ who offers solutions, which almost always involves the painting of Pithoras on the walls of the house. The Pithora Baba is considered to be the reigning deity of the community and his presence is considered to be the solution of all problems. The first wall of the house is considered to be the right place for a Pithora. A Pithora is however, considered to be a three-wall affair, so the first wall and the other two walls around it are prepared for the painting. The walls to be painted are first plastered with mud and cow dung by the unmarried girls of the household, and then coated with chalk powder this process is called lipna. And then the painters proceed to do their work.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Kerala Mural

Kerala mural paintings are the frescos depicting mythology and legends, which are drawn on the walls of temples and churches in South India, principally in Kerala. Ancient temples, churches and palaces in Kerala, South India, display an abounding tradition of mural paintings mostly dating back between the 9th to 12th centuries CE when this form of art enjoyed Royal patronage.

Friday, June 6, 2008


The word patachitra is derived from the Sanskrit word "pata", which means a painted piece of cloth, a picture, a tablet or a plate; "chitra" means painting or picture. Elements of folk and sophisticated art and craft characterise each finely executed patachitra. It is the traditional art of ORISSA. The intricate picture is drawn using vegetable colours on a special fabric (matha). This fabric is stuck to a wooden base using glue(kaitha atha).

Monday, June 2, 2008

Phad Painting [Rajasthan]

Phad painting is a beautiful specimen of Indian cloth painting. Rajasthan in Western India is its place of origin. In the simplest term Phad can be described as a large painting on cloth, which venerates the deeds of a hero. The smaller version of phada is known as phadakye. Generally, the life events of Goga Chauhan, Prithaviraj Chauhan, Amar Singh Rathor, Tejaji, and many others were illustrated on the Phadas in the earlier times but today the stories from the life of Papuji, and Narayandevji are primarily depicted. For their unique beauty and chronicling character, Phada painting has come to be regarded as one of the most sought after folk paintings in the world.

I have done the above painting on handmade paper using poster colors.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Warli in Madhubani Style

I have drawn a Warli picture and colored it in Madhubani style [including Madhubani border] using Indian ink.