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Warli

 

"THE GRAPHIC VILLAGE
Painted tales of the Warli tribe

As the bamboo brush dipped in white rice paste paint touches the wall, the form of a square takes shape. Palghat- The Mother Goddess symbolising fertility- rests within the square devchauk adorned as a temple in the middle of the painted village. Around the Chauk the people of the village start gathering to carry out their daily activities- women taking care of children, cleaning their homes, and churning butter, the men toil away in the fields, hunt, and spread nets to catch fish, and the children and animals play in the fields. Each figure of triangles and circles dance to the rhythm of everyday life, joining hands together to come into a spiral dance celebrating life!

The Warli painting is a ritualistic art of the Warli tribe of northern Maharashtra, India. Made for special occassions of weddings and harvest, the artform is said to date nearly 2500 years back. The traditional wall paintings depict no mythological themes, but scenes of everyday life. The circle and triangle come from the tribe’s observation of nature, the circle representing the sun and the moon, the triangle derived from mountains and pointed trees. Only the square seems to obey a different logic and seems to be a human invention, indicating a sacred enclosure or a piece of land.

Today, while the artform has become widely popular on cloth and paper, they look best on the walls or in the form of huge murals that bring out the vast and magical world of the Warlis. For the Warlis, tradition is still adhered to but at the same time new ideas have been allowed to seep in which helps them depict their understanding of the ever-changing world around them."

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