Sunday, May 26, 2024

Madhubani Art

Written By Sadhna Singh (Grade 9)

Art is a very crucial part of our lives and that of nature. Indeed, Ai Weiwei, a famous Chinese artist, once said “Life is art. Art is life. I never separate it.’’ We see art in every form of nature. After all, isn’t nature just art made by the supreme artist whom we call God?

We have all heard many sayings, quotes and proverbs which regard nature as the greatest teacher from whose every aspect we can learn something new. And if we are to regard to Art as a form of nature, doesn’t it mean that it teaches us many things to?

While it is easy to get lost talking about the teachings of God’s art, they are infinite. And thus, it is impossible for a mere human such as myself to write about them and do proper justice to them. Thus, I have decided to share my opinions and observations regarding a form of art created by humans, one that I like to believe I know much about.

Madhubani Art or Mithila Painting originates from the ancient city of Mithila specifically the present-day Madhubani district in Bihar. The paintings were traditionally done on freshly plastered mud walls but now are also done on cloth, handmade paper and canvas. Traditional Madhubani paintings were made from the paste of powdered rice and was practiced by women in the region, who would decorate the walls and floors of their homes on auspicious occasions such as festivals, weddings, and births.

Characterised by its vibrant colours and intricate patterns, Madhubani art typically features geometric shapes, floral designs, and motifs inspired by nature and mythology. The paintings often depict scenes from Hindu mythology, folklore, and everyday life. Though Madhubani art has many shapes, forms and styles its two main styles are Bharni and Kachni. Bharni involves filling in the shapes with solid colours, while Kachni involves fine lines and intricate patterns.

While all these are what sets Madhubani art apart from other forms of art what I admire the most in them is what they show. While other forms of art focus on a variety of topics, the focus of Madhubani paintings is always eternal be it gods, deities, the beauties of nature or animals. Madhubani drawings give both the artist and the viewer a sense of peace. Madhubani drawings belong to the state of Bihar which is often plagued with epidemics and natural disasters. Madhubani paintings represent a bright spot in the history of Bihar which is full of bloodshed and wars. They show us that while the world is full of evil things it has good things too. And that even after we are gone and the evil has ended, they will remain. They show the devotion people have for their Gods, that merely remembering them will ease your mind and your way ahead.

The fine lines and geometrical shapes that make up a Madhubani painting show that even the smallest of things can make or break a painting. Madhubani art shows that practice is greater than talent. These thoughts motivate me when I am at my lowest.

Madhubani Art shows that nothing lasts forever. And that may be a comforting thought.

Featured Image Courtesy – Rooftop Art


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