Manjusa art is the folk art of “Angpradesh”. This art was earlier done by only two familes the Kumbhakar caste and the Malakar caste. The Kumbhakar caste used to make the pots on which the manjusa art is painted and worshipped during the festival. The Malakar caste makes the actual “manjusas” and paint the manjusa art on this strucutres.There is another caste called the Kashira caste, they used to make the pots out of “peetal”/brass. There are only two families left who still practice this art.
Manjusha art has been prevalent in Bhagalpur for a long time but between1931 -48 , it was brought to the forefront. In this period during the British rule, an ICS officer by name W.G.Archer and his wife started finding out more about Madhubani painting and Manjusa art.He fell in love with the art form . W.G.Archer put a collection together of manjusa art and had an exhibition in The India Office Library in London which became part of the Archer Collection. It was at this time that Manjusa art gained international recognition.But at that time due to the British rule the artisans could not flourish. After this golden period, Manjusa art seemed to be fading away in the background and was being practiced only by some people. In 1984 the Bihar government made an intitative called “Jansampoorna Vibagh” in which they went to the villages of Bhagalpur and showed them slideshows of Manjusa art and educated people about this traditional art form in the hope of reviving it.
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