PATTA CHITRA

Indian culture is  seeped in its traditions and deep-rooted history and Indian art forms are a reflection of that culture, Indian art is used to study the different artistic  expressions created in the historical regions.

Patta Chitra is a traditional form of Indian paintings done on cloth. The name originated from the sanskrit language in which ‘Patta’ means “cloth” and ‘Chitra’ means “picture”. The paintings depict stories of Hindu deities mostly and are originated in Odisha and are specially inspired by Jagannath and Vaishnava sect and are displayed by rich colorful application, creative pattern and designs and portrayal of simple themes. 

Depiction of different art form are done like Thia Badhia- temple of Jagannath, Krishna Lila- enactment of Jagannath as Lord Krishna, Dasabatara patti- the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu, Panchamukhi. Painting resembles the old murals of Odisha especially religious centres of Puri, Konark and Bhubaneswar region of th century BC. 

The Pattachitra is mixture of both folk and classical elements style The pattern of dresses are influenced by Mughal and well defined postures were made. Raghurajpur, a small village of Puri district is the only village where each family is engaged in crafts in India. A thin transparent like fine cotton cloth coated with white stone powder and gum made of tamarind seeds is the process used by the Chitrakars for preparing the canvas. The gum of the Kaitha tree is the chief ingredient used as a base for making different pigments and for white shade effects, powdered conch shells are used.

It is a disciplined art form that is set of rules and restrictions and all paintings have floral borders with the use of natural colors. Prominent  solid shades are used so the paintings depict stark emotional expressions with great details. Painting completion is done when canvas is held over a charcoal fire and lacquer is applied to the surface. The root of the keya plant is used for making common brush and mouse hair is used on the requirements of finer brushes, to be attached to wooden handles. 

Over time, the art of pattachitra has gone through a commendable transition. Now, the chitrakars paint on tussar silk and palm leaves, and also create wall hangings and showpieces. These innovations never turned as a hindrance in the customary depictions of figures and colors  remained intact throughout generations. Because of the stringent methodology of the art, it survives, preserving the effervescence of the aesthetic Pattachitra. These folk paintings are known globally and institutions are setting up to learn this popular art form of Odisha that speaks volumes about its consistency and popularity. 

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