Warli Paintings

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Recently, an exhibition by the Inherited Arts Forum, traces the artistic journey of the celebrated Mashe family and their effort in reviving the Warli painting.

About Warli Paintings

  • It is a style of tribal art created by the tribal people from the North Sahyadri Range in Maharashtra.
  • This art form can be traced back to 10th century AD but was first discovered and appreciated for its distinctive style only in the early 1970s.
  • It was traditionally practised by women of the Warli tribe called Suvasinis, who decorated the Lagn Chowk or the wedding square.
  • Theme:
    • Warli represents the daily routine of rural life, the relationship of the tribal people with nature, their gods, myths, traditions, customs, and festivities. 
    • These rudimentary wall paintings use a set of basic geometric shapes: a circle, a triangle, and a square.
    • The central motif in each ritual painting is the square, known as the "chauk" or "chaukat", mostly of two types known as Devchauk and Lagnachauk.
    • One of the central aspects depicted in many Warli paintings is the tarpa dance. The tarpa, a trumpet-like instrument, is played in turns by different village men. Men and women entwine their hands and move in a circle around the tarpa player. 
  • Painting technique and materials
    • First design is selected.
    • Without tracing design, it is directly drawn on paper or cloth.
    • Cleverly modified bamboo sticks are used as paint brushes to create the paintings.
    • The colours and materials used for the paintings are derived from nature like brown and orange from henna, indigo from dye, red from bricks and white from thick rice paste.

Q1) Who are Warli tribes ?

Warli Tribes are an Adivasi indigenous tribe who live in the mountainous, coastal, and bordering regions of Gujarat and Maharashtra. The word 'Warli' is derived from the word 'Warla,' which means 'piece of land'.The Warli people speak Varli or Warli, an Indo-Aryan language. 

Source: Life through geometry in Warli