These folk paintings are handmade by women artists of Madhubani.
As a unique characteristic, these paintings often show big, bulging, fish-like eyes and sharp noses.
An Original Madhubani Painting is always UNIQUE - only 1 copy exists, and is painted by a Madhubani Artist recognised by Govt. of India.
Where did Madhubani Art originate?
Did you know that Madhubani is a district in Bihar Region of India, bordering Mithila in Nepal. Historical whole area was called Mithila. For generations, Creative Women Artists of the region have been decorating the Walls of Homes and Community Places in Mithila, with this Art-Form. Now-a-days, it is popularly known as Madhubani Art - inheriting the name of the district - 'Madhubani'.
Any historically significance?
Mythologically, Mithila Naresh or King of Mithila - Raja Janak employed local women to decorate the walls and floors of his Magnificent Royal Palace on the occasion of his daughter Sita's wedding with Ram, the prince of Ayodhya!
How is it made?
Down the centuries, the women of Mithila kept this tradition alive by painting on the walls and floors of their houses during festivals, ceremonies or special occasions. Mithila paintings show double-bordered figures that have big bulging, fish like eyes and sharp noses. Generally, no space is left empty, and gaps are filled with geometrical patterns. Madhubani paintings use 2-Dimensional imagery and has 5 distinctive styles - Katchni, Bharni, Tantrik, Godna and Kohbar. The Finer and the more Detailed an art work is, the more Valuable and Pricier it becomes.
Naturally occurring things, like vegetables, minerals, and cow-dung, are mixed and processed to make its colours.
Bright Natural Yellow Paint from Turmeric
Some artists now have started using Acrylic colours as well. These natural colours are then painted using fingers, twigs, brushes, nibs and sometimes match sticks giving a sense of antiquity.
What does it symbolise?
Each Madhubani painting, symbolises love, valour, longevity, auspiciousness, knowledge, spirituality, prosperity and harmony with nature.
Madhubani Art-Forms depicts humans and their association with Nature and Society. They show scenes from the royal court and social events like wedding, & deities from ancient epics like Rama-Sita, Shiva- Parvati, Vishnu, Ganesha and Durga, or elements from nature like animals, birds, the Sun, the Moon, trees and flowers.
Is Madhubani Art relevant today?
With higher Aspirations and better Living conditions, the Significance and Desire for Art is increasing in India and World.
Being an age-old folk Art, Madhubani is much sought after these days. In fact, people of Japan are very fond of this art form and have Mithila Museum in Nigata region on Togamchi mountain, having 15,000 Madhubani paintings.
An interesting thing about traditional art form that has made it more relevant today, is that it can be adapted to contemporary subjects. These days Mithila or Madhubani paintings can be seen on everyday objects like Canvases, Wall Hangings, Sarees, Bangles, Handbags and Lampshades.
Are these Authentic?
For centuries, The Art of making a Madhubani painting has remained confined to a small geographical area, where generations of Artists have passed on their knowledge to their children. This has helped preserve the content and style to a large extent.