India Art Journal Aug 7,8,9,10 By Meera Rao
I find that brilliant vibrant hues and patterns come my way in unexpected places and times. I know I am in India and shouldn't be surprised ! I notice a lot of reddish orange these days - from bunches of 'flame of the forest' on trees and now only a few on the ground since they have just started blooming, to the orange on the guy riding with the cargo on the produce 'lorry' as well as the tribal woman weaving at the folk art festival of India that I was able to attend.
At the festival I was introduced to 'Gond' paintings of a tribe from central India. The Gond people believe that looking at beautiful images brings good luck and decorate their huts and houses, all walls and floors with beautiful stylized paintings/ motiffs and designs. Now they paint on canvases or paper with acrylic or tempera paints for the collectors and museums. I was also intoduced to many other tribes and their art -Weaving from Manipura tribes (sketch for Aug 9, when I was at the Folk art Festival) Toda embroidery from Tamil nadu, warli paintings from Maharastra , Saora paintings from Orissa and Andra Pradesh, paddy work form Orissa, Madna paintings from Rajasthan to name a few.
I was so inspired by the Gond paintings that I decided to paint the cow I came upon that was being groomed by two crows, in that style. It was difficult to do intricate designs in the small size I was sketching but I loved creating that way. I hope to paint a few more bigger versions with all the details soon :) I am thinking about a children's book in that style :)
Cow being groomed by two crows in gond style painting by Meera Rao