Painted Legends – The Pattachitras of Puri

May 27, 2013

A visit to the state museum of Bhubaneshwar in Odisha revealed the beauty of fine Pattachitra paintings of Gods & Goddesses.

These painted textiles are unique and easy to recognize from the way the drawing are made and from the lacquer glossing done over the painting as a way of preserving the paint.

A few pictures of the displays at the musuem:

(The paintings are inside glass casing and so the pictures are not very clear)

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multi-headed lord Ganesh

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Goddess Kaali

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Shiva Parvati Union

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Radha – Krishna

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Shabari & Lord Ram

And the magnificent Jagannath Temple of Puri :

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And the idols of the Jagannath temple of Puri.

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All the above are examples from the museum – all of significant age – some 19th century some early 20th century.

A master-artist explaining the materials and the process used in these paintings

The art of palm leaf painting

The art of palm leaf painting

Natural nuggets containing various minerals – to be used as Colors

The art of palm leaf painting

The art of palm leaf painting

The wood twig paint brush

The art of palm leaf painting

Lacquer that is melted and used to glaze the entire painting

Following are a few examples from the Wovensouls collection

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The back – where the lacquer glaze can be seen clearly.

Only pattachotras of significant age have this lacquer glaze. For newer one this process is not used.

There is something very appealing about this naive art. Maybe I see the innocence of the people of Odisha reflected in these pieces and that is what makes them attractive!

jm

May 2013

 

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