Pattachitra Paintings – UPSC Prelims

The Prime Minister has praised the Odisha ‘pattachitra’ painting in the Mann Ki Baat.
About Patachitra Painting
  • Pattachitra or Patachitra Painting: The name Pattachitra has evolved from Sanskrit words patta meaning canvas and chitra meaning picture.
  • It is a traditional, cloth-based scroll painting based in Odisha and West Bengal.

Odisha Pattachitra:
  • Based on: These paintings are based on Hindu mythology. They are especially inspired by Jagannath and the Vaishnava sect.
  • Colours: All colours used in the Paintings are natural. Material like Gum of tree, shells, and lam soot, etc. are used for making the color.
  • Paintings are made fully in the traditional way by Chitrakaras, i.e. Odiya Painter.
  • Style: The style is a mix of both folk and classical elements but leaning more towards folk forms. The dress style has Mughal influences.
  • Popular Themes: Some of the most popular themes represented through this art form are
    • Thia Badhia – depiction of the temple of Jagannath;
    • Krishna Lila – enactment of Jagannath as Lord Krishna displaying his powers as a child;
    • Dasavatara Patti – the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu;
    • Panchamukhi – depiction of Lord Ganesh as a five-headed deity.
Bengal Patachitra
  • Pattachitra has been a component of an ancient Bengali narrative art. It originally served as a visual device during the performance of a song.
  • Based on: The paintings are mostly based on mythological, religious stories, folklore, and social. The artist of the Bengal Patachitra is called Patua.
  • Colour: Use of natural color is one of the characteristics of the Bengal Patachitra.
  • The Kalighat Patachitra, the last tradition of Bengal Patachitra is developed by Jamini Roy.
  • Buddhist Literature: Bengal Patachitra is referred to in the Buddhist literature in Haribansha(1st century A.D), Abhigyan Shakuntalam(2nd century A.D) and Malavikagnimitra (4th century), Harshacharita (6th Century).

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