Madhubani Prints – Fabrics inspired by the traditional paintings

Madhubani prints are the current favourites in sarees that the market seems to have become bewitched by. Soft and silky offerings that carry a testimony of what inspirational art is when there is a subject worth emulating. Sarees that carry thematic representations of the famous Madhubani paintings on the facing canvas, the pallu or end piece.

What is this Madhubani art about?

Madhubani art or Madhubani paintings, also known as Mithila paintings are a special form of painting done with fingers, twigs, brushes, nib-pens, matchsticks being used as tools for painting while the paints used are natural dyes and pigments. The attraction of these paintings lies in the eye-catching geometrical patterns. Traditionally these paintings have their roots in Mithila, Nepal and close to Bihar on the Indian side. Madhubani paintings then took a more complex form in the paintings by moving on to occasion painting. Festivals, marriages, small ceremonies, Poojas etc. all found their way into these paintings, in detailed depictions and fine colors. Practised mainly by the women folk of that region, slowly Madhubani paintings became an art to be treasured, a national heritage.

A historical background, an ancient tradition

Historically it is in the times when Lord Janaka, father of Goddess Sita, ruled over Nepal (present day Janakpur) and he had ordered that the walls of the palace be decorated for the marriage of his daughter. The ancient traditional art Bhitti Chitra that was undertaken for decorating the walls is said to be inspirational for the Madhubani paintings to take root.

Women in that region, part of a close-knit society with strong beliefs and customs, were of the bent of mind that oneness with God and moving towards him would take root if divine subjects were given the form of paintings. So very taken to this belief were they that their paintings actually received the blessings of the Almighty in the way they turned out despite their humble attempts and limited resources.

Lord Janaka, Goddess Sita’s father had got the murals painted by the women of the house, of a certain village and certain caste. This tradition is more or less followed till this day with slight changes according to the age and the art is practiced during marriages.

Till about 1930, this remained restricted to being a household practice, rather than an art form. Later when a British colonial officer William.G.Archer astounded by what he saw, spoke and also wrote about it subsequently. In the 70s Pupul Jayakar and others encouraged the women of Mithila to put this art that was practised only on mud walls within a hut, in front of a wider audience and gain from it to sustain themselves with it as a livelihood.

Modern Day fashion designers and connoisseurs of this art saw fit to put it on other canvas as well besides paper. Thus fabrics also got the benefit from an art that almost never saw the light of day.

Madhubani Art Today

Madhubani painting remained confined to a compact geographical area and though the skills have been passed on through centuries, the content and the style have largely remained the same. That is largely the reason why Madhubani art received the GI label or status. The paintings mostly depict man, his association with nature, objects all around in Nature, flora, fauna, and then themes like court scenes, social events like weddings, interspersed with nature objects in the free spaces. It is said to have five distinctive styles - Bharni, Katchni, Tantrik, Nepali and Gobar. The upper castes chose religious themes and depicted Gods and Goddesses in their paintings - Bharni, Katchni, Tantrik. The lower castes still carry on with Godna and Gobar styles.

Madhubani became known internationally when the President awarded Padma Shri to Jagdamba Devi in 1975. Others also received National awards subsequently then on.

Buy online Madhubani Prints sarees at Unnati silks

Inspirational silk sarees with prints from the occasion paintings practiced by women, where the royal court scenes, weddings, festivals and other social events of the time of Mithila, become the themes in fine prints on the Pallus or end Pieces of the rich and lush silks of Bengal silks and pure mulberry silks.

A feast for the eyes, a thrill for the wearer, a thing to be prized by the buyer, a heritage to be treasured by the nation – is what Madhubani Prints Silk sarees are.

Buy online Madhubani Prints sarees and get the Unnati advantage

Unnati silks, largest ethnic Indian shop online provides for you to buy online Madhubani Prints saris with matching blouse for sale. Online shopping store with the widest range of ethnic Indian Sarees online and Salwar Kameez online. At Unnati Silks, you can buy Madhubani Prints sari online from the exclusive range of saris - a unique, fancy prints sarees, exclusive collection of Traditional, Wedding, bridal attire, stylish sarees online, party, trendy fashion, formal, corporate, office, daily casual saris in pure silk sarees, pure cotton sarees,pure handloom sarees, sico sarees, art silk georgette, chiffon, dupion, tussar, organza, crepe, gicha work sarees, jute work sarees,designer sarees and other fabric varieties at attractive prices.

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