India’s Traditional Art Forms: Folk and Tribal Art Leave a comment

Dhokra Metal Art


• It is a non ferrous metal casting

• Metal casting used in India since 4000 yrs

• One of the earliest known lost wax artefacts is the dancing girl of “MOHENJO DARO”.

• Famous bcoz of its simplicity enchanting folk motifs and forceful form

• Dhokla damai tribes are traditional metal smiths of India




Warli Art


• Traditional painting of costal areas of Maharashtra and


• This painting is done since 2500 or 30000 BCE

• Their mural painting is similar to those between 500 and

10000 BCE in rock shelter of bhimbetka in M.P.

• Painting about warily is earthy and soothing



Gond Art


Art rendezvous with the belief that “viewing a good image

begets good fortune”

• This art is carried till present date from 16th century, Origin-MAHARASHTRA 

• The gond’s used to paint wall on festivals that could fight

evil and bring optimism called “DIGHNA”

• For them the paintings are a portal to surreal world


Kalamkari Painting


• Started originally in season era in Iran almost 2500 yrs ago

• A type of hand painted orblock printed cotton textile produced in Iran and India

• Meaning “drawing with pen”

• Two distinctive styles are present “srikalahasta” and “machilipatnam”

• The former depicts hindu epics while the later evolved with the patronage of the Mughals



Kalighat Painting


• Originated in 19th century, Bengalz

• Depicts hindu gods and other mythological characters.

• They mainly captured the essence of daily life

• Artists made simple paintings that could be converted into




Phad Painting


• Art carried forward since 16th and 17th century.

• Religious folk painting practised in Rajasthan state of India and this style of

painting is traditionally done on a long piece of cloth or canvas, knows as Phad

• Folk dieties mainly pabuji and Devnarayan are depicted on the phads.

• Joshi families of Bhilwara district of Rajasthan are widely known for this art.



Miniature Art



• Painting in india traced since 2nd century B.C.

• These are Indian painting generally illustration on the book and done in miniature.

• Initially were done on palm leaves that were later transitioned on paper

• Subjects of miniature=“krishna Lila”, raga rag inis, nayika bheda etc.



Pattachitra Art



• It is the general term used for clot based scroll painting

• Originated in eastern state, ODISHA

• patta= cloth,chitra=picture

• Most of the paintings depicts stories of hindu dieties

• Traditions of pattachitra are more than 1000 yrs old

• Theme of Oriya painting centres round the Jagannath and Vaishnav sect.


Rock Art


• Synonymous to parietal art

• Artwork divide into 3 forms {a} petrographs , {b} pictographs, {c} earth figures

• The oldest rock art dates from upper Palaeolithic period, found in Europe, Australia, Asia, Africa.

• It is believed that these art have magic religious significance.

• 1st developed in 19th century.


Madhubani Art



It is practiced in the Mithila region of India and nepal.

It has five distinct styles namely: Bharni, Katchni, Tantrik, Gonda, kohbar.

It mostly depicts men and its association with nature

Mithila painting received official recognition in 1969 when Sita

Devi received State award by Government of Bihar.


Thanjavur Painting



Thanjavur paintings are characterized by rich, flat and vivid colors, simple iconic composition, glittering

gold foils overlaid on delicate but extensive gesso work and inlay of glass beads and pieces or very rarely

precious and semi-precious gems.

Thanjavur paintings arepanel paintings.

Tanjore paintings were painted by ‘Moochysor Artists of India‘.


Toda Embroidery



The Toda Embroidery, also locally known as “pukhoor“.

The embroidery, which has a fine finish, appears like a woven cloth but is made with use

of red and black threads with a white cotton cloth background.

Both men and women adorn themselves with the embroidered cloaks and shawls.


Naga Handicraft



It is well known that Nagas are the living examples of skilled labors

and craftsman and their handiworks are famous worldwide.

They use indigenous and natural recyclable products to manufacture items which are also

durable in nature because these are abundant in the environment they live in.


Patola Sari



Patola is a double ikat woven sari, usually made from silk.

Made in Patan, Gujrat.

They are very expensive, once worn only by those

belonging to royal and aristocratic families.


Chambal Rumal



The Chamba Rumal or Chamba handkerchief is an embroidered handicraft that

was once promoted under the patron age of the former rulers of Chamba kingdom.

Earliest form of this rumalis the one made

by BebeNanki, sister of Guru Nanakin the 16th century.


Sanjhi Art


Sanjhiart is the traditional art of stenciling from Mathura, Krishna’s hometown.

Known for its inherent spiritual implications that reach beyond immediate

aesthetic appeal, it is considered to be one of the finest arts of spiritual expression.

The art depicts Indian mythological stories


Wildlife Painting


Parashar is considered Ranthambhore’s first son.

Born and raised in the towns flanking the Ranthambhore forests

His passion for Ranthambhore and all its inhabitants, quadruped, biped and stationary inspired him to found the Ranthambhore School of Art and Wildlife Conservation Society in 1982.



Editor – Vaishali Maratha, Riya Agarwal, Disha Jain, Vishal Pathak





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