Madhubani Painting: The Symbol of Mithlanchal
Madhubani painting is a style of Indian painting, that evolved, nourished and flourished in a culturally prosperous Mithila region of Bihar. After the confindment of years the Madhubani painting came into flash in 1970 when the President of India had given the award to Mrs Jagdamba Devi from a tinny Village Jitbarpur near Madhubani for her contribution in this art. Beside her, two other artist, Mrs Sita Devi and Mrs Mahasundari Devi,had got the national awards as well.In 2011, Shri Mahasundari Devi was chosen for the Padma Shri by Indian government. In the present arena the flag bearers of Madhubani paintings include Shri Bua Devi Jha, Shri Jagdamba Devi, Shri Sita Devi, Shri Mahasundari Devi and others.
A fabulous collection of the samples of Mithila's domestic art is demonstrated 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, near Patna.
The origins of Madhubani painting are cloaked in antiquity and mythology it has been traditionally done by the women of villages around the present town of Madhubani and other areas of Mithila popularly known as Mithalanchal. The painting was conventionally done on newly plastered mud wall of huts which is quite common in mithalanchal, but now in its new avatar it is also made on hand-made paper, cloth, and canvas to reach the drawing room and bed room of the art lover across the globe.
As Madhubani painting has remained confined to the Mithlanchal area of Bihar for the long period and the skills of the artists have been passed on one generation to another. The Madhubani painting had changed their canvas with time however the content and the style have largely remained the same. Madhubani painting generally uses two dimensional imagery and the colors used are derived from various plants. Lampblack and ochre are also used for reddish brown and black sheds respectively.