Warli Folk Paintings

 

This unique kind of painting style was discovered in early seventies of twentieth century. By now all were enchanted to the magical world of vibrant Madhubani paintings of Mithila and colorful Pata paintings of Orissa, Bengal and Rajashthan.Warli paintings are made by the people of Warli tribe inhabiting in the Thane district of Modern Maharashtra.Warli paintings are strikingly different from other forms of Indian Paintings.The theme of these paintings also does not move around mythological stories or any glorification of similar kind.

These paintings are made in austere brown background with white as only color. The only exception is red and yellow spots that are auspiciously put to decorate the painting. These paintings are special for many reasons. Most remarkable thing is their intensely social nature. These paintings look outward, while retaining the life around and by implication the humanness of living men, animals and trees.These figures form a loose, rhythmic pattern across the entire sheet. These paintings describe the day today activities of Warlis in light swinging and swirling movements. These figures have the eloquence to communicate with themselves and the outside world. Though these paintings were discovered late but their traditions are ages old. Scholars trace their origin in Neolithic Age that extends from 3000 B.C. to 2500 B.C.

Warli paintings are made by village artists who are known as “savasini”- or a woman whose husband is alive.

They go on replicating the same format- a central figure of mother goddess surrounded by an elaborately decorated square. A landscape of soaring trees surrounds the square through which animals and men weave in and out, preparing for a wedding. Each painting is unique in its palpitating inflections though the composition is same.

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