Handpainted painting by our artist

The Kalighat paintings developed in the 19th century in the Bengal presidency. The travelling scroll painters or the patuas had been practising folk art of Pattachitra. The new...  Read More

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The Jungle's Rhapsody: A Kalighat Painting by Uttam Chitrakar
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The Kalighat paintings developed in the 19th century in the Bengal presidency. The travelling scroll painters or the patuas had been practising folk art of Pattachitra. The new manners and customs of the British settlers, the revivalist exercises of the Mughal and theatres as well as the use of Sanskrit on stage was absorbed by the rural artists who had migrated to Calcutta and developed it into a popular urban genre. The period of Kalighat paintings coincides with the age of mechanical reproduction in the form of woodcut, lithography, oleography and printing.
The artists primarily depicted what surrounded the artists. Their dietary practices made fish a recurring and common motif in the paintings. Another important element in the Kalighat paintings was the cat. Paintings depicting Cat with a Fish depict the religious hypocrisy, where the cat is a satirical representation of the false aesthetic. The artists also painted the religious figures such as Durga, episodes from the epics, and other sacred texts. Many paintings commented on the priests, perhaps depicting the social customs that prevailed during that period. Babus with their hair groomed in the Albert style, wearing expensive shawls and buckled shoes, smoking their hookahs and sitting on Victorian chairs was a common depiction.
The Kalighat painters interacted with the colonial paintings and began the use of water colours, shaded figures, folio-sized mill made papers. The colours were applied in a sequence, one at a time. The exposed limbs and faces were painted first, followed by the clothes and other detailing.