History Of Mithila Paintings

In the present time the main artists include Smt Bharti Dayal 'Ganga devi' Smt Bua Devi, late Smt Jagdamba Devi, late Smt Sita Devi, Smt Mahasundari Devi and others. Madhubani painting got official recognition in 1970 when the President of India gave an award to Mrs Jagdamba Devi of Village Jitbarpur near Madhubani. Beside her, other painters, Mrs Sita Devi ' Mrs Mahasundari Devi Mrs 'godavari dutt, Mrs Bharti dayal and bua devi were also given national awards in this Art field by President of India[1]. Smt Bharti dayal won an award from All India Fine Arts and Crafts for fifty years of art in independent India and the state Award for Kalamkari in Mithila painting and her painting, "Eternal Music" bagged the top award in Millennium Art

Mahasundari Devi was again awarded, this time Padma Shri by the government of India in 2011.[2] What is Unique in Bharti's work is the fact that she centers her art to heritage style and yet manages to create an entirely modern and contemporary work from it. A surge of fantasy in her work makes them appear fresh and Graceful. Her work is Experimental and Authentic. She uses both realism as well as abstractionism in her work with a lot of fantasy mixed into both.Her work has impeccable sense of balance,harmony and grace. We need a whole army of Bharti's to bring back the beauty and glory of Mithila painting.
A collection of some samples of Mithila's domestic arts may be seen in the Chandradhari Museum, Darbhanga. W.G. Archer has also a collection of Mithila paintings and so has Upendra Maharathi, the artist, under whose supervision a collection of Bihar's folk art and craft has been built up at the Bihar Government Institute of Industrial Design, Digha, Patna.[3]Late smt yamuna devi,chano devi,yogmayadevi,anmanadevi and bachhadai devi has also contributed to this Art. Asha Verma, born in Darbhanga, is dedicated to promote Madhubani art through her research work and her Madhubani paiting workshop popularily known as Ashas' creations at Sri Krishna Nagar, Patna.


The origins of Madhubani painting or Mithala Painting are shrouded in antiquity and mythology.
Madhubani painting has been done traditionally by the women of villages around the present town of Madhubani (the literal meaning of which is forests of honey) and other areas of Mithila. The painting was traditionally done on freshly plastered mud walls and floors of huts, but now they are also done on cloth, hand-made paper and canvas. Madhubani paintings are made from the paste of powdered rice. Madhubani painting has remained confined to a compact geographical area and the skills have been passed on through centuries, the content and the style have largely remained the same. And that`s why this has been given the coveted GI (geographical Indication) status. Madhubani paintings also use two dimensional imagery, and the colors used are derived from plants. Ochre and lampblack are also used for reddish brown and black respectively.
Madhubani paintings mostly depict nature and Hindu religious motifs, and the themes generally revolve around Hindu deities like Krishna, Ram, Shiva, Durga, Lakshmi, and Saraswati. Natural objects like the sun, the moon, and religious plants like tulsi are also widely painted, along with scenes from the royal court and social events like weddings. Generally no space is left empty; the gaps are filled by paintings of flowers, animals, birds, and even geometric designs. Objects depicted in the walls of kohabar ghar (where newly wed couple see each other in the first night) are symbols of sexual pleasure and procreation.
Traditionally, painting was one of the skills that was passed down from generation to generation in the families of the Mithila Region, mainly by women.