A lost art from the bosom of West Bengal, or from the city of Kolkata, which was formerly known as Calcutta. A form of painting that has been revered not only by artists of different art periods but surprisingly is owned mostly by the Victoria and Albert Museum in London and Naprstek Museum in Prague. Kalighat Paintings are also known to be an inspiration for many artists like Jamini Roy.
This art developed way back in the 19th century Kolkata around Kalighat Temple.
A very unique thing about this kind of painting was that they were not done by only one individual. Usually, a whole family and its members were involved in creating a painting. Depending on the age, the members of a family were given different responsibilities while completing a certain painting. The painting started with a painter doing just the outline or sketch of the scene to be depicted. It was followed by another person who did the actual drawing and contouring of the figures. Next came the coloring which was done by another person or group and they would fill out the generic background colors too. The women and children of the household were responsible for making the dyes and crushing the colors and making the initial preparations for the painting.
Different Style of Kalighat
The Kalighat paintings ranged from normal household pictures to deities like Goddess Saraswati, to pets and animals. This art was a voice for several kinds of schools of thought as well as the changing of history that was happening throughout that period. These motifs are still used as some of the main designs of Sarees and other things.
Another reason to buy Kalighat Paintings
Presently, the artwork is practiced in some of the rural areas of Bengal, and most of the artworks are owned by collectors in other parts of the world than India. It is heartbreaking how such a beautiful piece of art was lost and the greatest pieces reside somewhere so far away from the birthplace of these gorgeous paintings.
The patuas still reside in some of the villages where the art form is handed down through generations and kept alive through hard work and untiring effort. The love for art is what keeps history alive through the ages.
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India has a special kind of connection with its artisans and the colorful culture found in the nook and corners of this land. Local art like basket weaving, temple paintings, and terracotta vessels are just parts of our heritage hidden away.
We bring you the history, the forgotten legacies, through authentic art, right from their birthplaces, to you.
Clio’s Heritage Store is a store with a story. Every product comes with a tale of its very own. We promote various local artisans from every corner of India, while also upholding the legacy that our country holds. When you buy from us, you help keep alive the dreams of hundreds of handicraftsmen, you help contribute in the cause of keeping our ancestry alive. You help the cottage industries and the small businesses and mostly you keep our heritage alive.
So come, and be a part of this journey of knowing history through the art of our country.
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