Madhubani Arts - History - Introduction

[This piece of article is provided by Ms. SONAM DHINGRA who is a prominent art teacher at City Vocational Public School, Meerut, by profession and an artist herself. She has done in-depth research on indian arts and crafts.]

The exact reason or time of the origination of Madhubani art is unknown. However, the legend has it that it came into vogue during the time of Ramayana, when King Janak ordered the artists in his own kingdom to make beautiful paintings for the wedding of his daughter Sita, to Lord Rama. This art, with a tradition going back to the centuries, is today an exclusive monopoly of women artists.

They paint figures from nature and myth on household and village walls to mark the seasonal festivals of the religious year, for special events of the life-cycle, and when marriages are being arranged they prepare intricately designed wedding proposal. Initially, the women in Madhubani started making the paintings on the walls of their huts. With time, the artists began creating Madhubani art on paper, cloth and canvas also.