Originally these paintings adorned the walls and floors of houses and were formed mostly by women during religious ceremonies or weddings. The practise of Madhubani art has been passed down from person to person and is now widely recognised throughout the world. You can see images painted on paper cloth and canvas.
Traditionally the paintings are constructed using mainly matchsticks, fingers, nib-pens, twigs and brushes, however, now more modern tools are used to create these beautifully elaborate paintings. Natural pigments are derived from plant material to create two dimensional paintings that contain geometric designs depicting scenes from ancient mythology, as well as folklore and nature.
I found Madhubani art very exciting and colourful. Its intricate designs remind me of henna art commonly painted on hands and feet during holy festivals and weddings. For me painting in a two dimensional format felt very refreshing a huge change from what I usually paint. I love how this art form illustrates everyday life in a simple yet unique way, capturing the hearts and minds of both adults and children.
I will be doing a series of these paintings loosely based on this form of art. For the first in this series I have made a painting based on the natural aspects of Madhubani art. It shows a fish. Madhubani has some associations with Feng Shui philosophy. The fish represents prosperity and fertility. I’m heading more towards the prosperity side of it though lol. The sun is very important in Madhubani design as it signifies life giving energy. Although this art form uses natural pigments and colours, I have opted for a more colourful approach and used acrylics for a very vibrant, eye catching painting. If you love bright colours then this painting is for you. I have named it ‘Prosperity’.