The art of the earth Art of rural and tribal India is part of our exclusive culture which establishes our authenticity of rich cultural past. The Indian peninsula is a land that portrays cultural and traditional vibrancy through its living cultures and handicrafts. Our place and people have enriched handicraft from almost all regions. Diversification and unique master craftsman-ship make it all the more exclusive. The 35 states and union territories sprawled across the country have their own distinct cultural and traditional identities, and are displayed through various forms of art prevalent there. The rural and urban population now can see a great divide but still there are pockets in each states of India where we will be able to find an artisan enameling a lamp, carving a ganesha statue out of red sand stone, making a pata or doing kalamkari on a piece of clothâ€¦ these are just a very few example among the vast number of handicraft living in India. These are some traditional crafts men who still continue family occupation of painting, metal carving, stone carving, enamelling etc. etc.
Our approach is to represent Indian folk and tribal art on global platform. Folk and tribal art in India takes on different manifestations through varied medium such as pottery, painting, metalwork, paper-art, weaving and designing of objects such as jewelery and toys. The distinction between high and low art is enormous and hence high art being considered more cerebral leaves the abundant folk and tribal to its fate. The Indian state has funded many a tribal and folk art to stay alive but still it is mostly dying the death of its fate. Thus our focus here is largely subverting the politics of art making in India, making artisan the face of vibrant India. Folk art The indigenous arts of India go beyond the decorative or mere ornamentation as integral makers in the stages of the life cycle â€“ birth, passage to manhood, marriage and death. They do not exist separated from the everyday but are conceived from within. Not merely observing but making permanent and sacred, marking forever the profundity of local ritual.
The distinction between Folk and Tribal art is limited and at times overlaps. However, the usage of colors and lines are general indicators of their difference. Each religion and philosophical system provided its own nuances, vast metaphors and similes, rich associations, wild imaginations, humanization of gods and celestial beings, characterization of people, the single purpose and ideal of life to be interpreted in art. Most of traditional folk paintings of India are executed on scrolls/ hand made papers. In case off scrolls each painting frame is stitched or joined to form a long narrative. The colors used are largely made of vegetable dyes but in some instances contemporary colors are now used for their vibrancy. The application of paint is water based, mixed with natural gum.
These can be exemplified by miniature art of Rajasthan, patuas of Bengal and Orissa, warli of Maharashtra, madhubani of Bihar. Folk art plays a powerful and integral role in ethnography and anthropology. It is a living, breathing organic art form which shall never cease to exist. Therefore not only the objects created by the anonymous folk ought to be honored but also the life that makes that possible.