A Ganesha picture in any form is a symbol of auspiciousness and
good luck, as it is Lord Ganesha who helps devotees by removing obstacles for a
fruitful life and that strength to tackle their problems effectively. Lord
Ganesha in this Madhubani painting is graciously poised like the Nataraja, as
evident of him being the son of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati. Lord Shiva is
revered as the cosmic God of Dance, which is inherited in this painting by Lord
Ganesha; pictured in white, red and black color tones against a dull grey-blue
geometric patterned background.
Madhubani paintings are a popular demand by those who have a
good taste of art. Here Ganesha stands on a single foot on a lotus carpet with
the other raised high along the hip line. Chaturbhujadhari has his hands tattooed
in auspicious symbols and finger tips beautified with alta; rear hands hold the
traditional implements symbolic of his patronage and the anterior one are
elegantly postured in the iconic Lord Shiva’s Nataraja mudra. The designer
garbs are a complement to his white hued plumage and also match with the leaf
thread on the trunk. Sun haloed crown and the floral jewels are an add-on
beauty to the cosmic aura of Lord Ganesha.
This Nataraja Ganesha dances in a cyclically closed arch of
lotus flowers. Lotus is symbolic of purity and enlightenment in Hinduism which
is also a major attribute of Lord Ganesha. Ganesha’s auspicious vahana, mouse
sits at the bottom left in homage to the Lord, while holding the motichoor
laddoo. The opposite corner is occupied by two designer leaf trays with a diya
enlightened on it. Madhubani art is majorly festooned with the presence of
flowers and leaves which the painter has kept in focus by also framing it with a red and black border.
Madhubani painting is also known as Mithila art as it is practiced
in the Mithila region of India and Nepal. It has specifically
originated from the Madhubani district of the state of Bihar.
Traditionally, the women of this region created these paintings
and in recent years, it has become a widely practiced art and has
now become renowned throughout the world. This art expresses the
creativity and culture of the people of Mithila and is passed from
one generation to another. In this way, the heritage of Madhubani
art has been preserved for many decades.
The subjects of these paintings are usually religion, love, and
fertility. Sometimes, social events like festivals, weddings, and
royal court are also depicted in the paintings. The most commonly
painted designs and themes are the forms of Hindu Gods and
Goddesses such as Ganesha, Shiva, Saraswati, Lakshmi, Krishna, and
Ram. The characteristic features of Madhubani paintings are their
vibrant colors and eye-catching geometrical patterns. The empty
spaces are filled with traditional motifs such as floral and
foliate patterns, animals, birds, geometrical structures, and
other designs. The local artists create these paintings using a
variety of items such as matchsticks, twigs, brushes, pens, or
even their own fingers. The paints are usually made with natural
dyes and pigments.
As simple as it may seem, the making process of the world-famous
Madhubani paintings is certainly not easy and requires lots of
Traditional Madhubani paintings are done either on cloth,
handmade paper, or canvas. Select the medium of painting as per
your choice. If you have chosen cloth, attach it to cardboard to
make a solid base.
The making of the painting begins with making a double-lined
border. This is a very important step because the border is
filled with various geographical shapes and patterns or other
motifs. The average width of the border is 1.5 - 2 cm.
Now that the border is created, you will be left with a blank
middle space. This is the main workspace. Start drawing your
choice of figure, designs, and shapes. These must be relevant to
the Madhubani painting themes.
When the key design has been made, the empty spaces in between
are filled with some designs.
Now is the time to color the painting using vivid shades and
hues. Colors in Madhubani are sourced from nature; Indigo is
used to produce blue, flower juice produces red, turmeric gives
yellow, leaves produce green, cow dung mixed soot gives black,
and rice powder gives white.
To paint these colors, the artist uses a bamboo stick and wraps
cotton around it. This acts as a traditional brush.
The entire painting is now painted using this special brush with
natural vibrant colors. · However, in modern times, the common
brush is used and instead of natural colors, artists prefer to use
Since the entire painting is made with natural materials and
colors, it appears simple yet enriching. Originally, this art was
created on mud walls or soil grounds but when it evolved over many
years, the people of Madhubani started to make it on fabric and
paper. Today, this art has become globalized and is receiving
worldwide attention and appreciation.
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