Pichwai Art is large devotional Hindu painted pictures, normally on cloth, depicting Krishna. These paintings hang behind Shrinathji’s idol in temples.
They have become the main export of Nathdwara and are coveted by art enthusiasts worldwide. Their intricate detailing is unique and reflects the rich heritage of the community of artists living in Chitron Ki Gali (street of paintings) and Chitrakaron ka mohallah (colony of painters).
It is a form of art
Pichwai art is a traditional form of Indian art that originated nearly 400 years ago in the holy town of Nathdwara, near Udaipur. It is a form of painting that depicts stories from Indian mythology, tales, poetry and literature.
Artists paint these images on hand-spun starched cotton cloth using natural and organic colors, including coal, silver, gold, saffron, indigo and other natural pigments. This is a highly detailed process that requires a lot of time to complete.
The artists first sketch the image on the starched cotton cloth and then paint it using the motifs and patterns. In ancient times, they used goat and horse hair for the paint brushes. Currently, artists use gold threads to embellish the final artwork for a regal look.
These paintings were originally created for temples, but today, they are also found in homes and stores as souvenirs. These art pieces are popular for their enchanting designs and rich imagery.
They mainly focus on the life of Lord Krishna, who was a god with a strong leaning towards love and compassion. They include paintings of his childhood, Radha Krishna, and various festivals. Some examples of these include Janmashtami, Govardhan Puja, Ras Leela, Sharad Purnima and Annakut.
It is a very skillful art and the artists have to be extremely careful when painting these artworks as any minor error can be noticed easily. Therefore, it takes a few days for the artisans to complete one painting and several weeks to paint a large canvas.
The paints they use are derived from coal, silver, gold, saffron and other minerals. Initially, these paints were used on cotton cloth but in recent years, they have been used on paper.
Since these paints are made from natural materials, they are highly durable and long-lasting. They are also non-toxic and safe to wear.
These artworks are a part of India’s heritage and are regarded as a symbol of spirituality. They are said to evoke positive feelings and encourage peace. They are a beautiful and awe-inspiring addition to any home. They can be purchased online and in local shops across the country.
It is a form of worship
Pichwai Art is a form of worship that narrates the stories of Lord Krishna to people who are illiterate. It is a 400-year-old style of painting that originated in Nathdwara, a small town in Rajasthan. Its entrancing designs and captivating imagery have delighted art connoisseurs for centuries.
These paintings depict Shrinathji, or Lord Krishna in different poses and moods. These paintings are hung behind the idols of Krishna in temples. They are also hung on houses and other places as decorative pieces of art.
The motifs and patterns of these paintings are drawn on a starched and dried cloth, and the main character is portrayed in a beautiful manner with the use of a number of different types of brushes. They are often adorned with appliques and other traditional styles of embroidery like zardozi, gota work, gold thread stitching and pearls.
This type of art is a unique way to express devotion towards Krishna and his numerous avatars. These images are said to evoke positive and happy feelings in the viewer.
They are traditionally painted on a starched cotton cloth and depict various aspects of the life of Shrinathji or Krishna in a very artistic manner. They are usually surrounded by a verdant landscape of Vrindavan, which is famous for its ponds, trees, flowers and grazing cows.
In most paintings, Shrinathji or Krishna stands with his left hand in the air, symbolizing his power to raise Mount Govardhan. He is usually accompanied by Radha and Gopis, and other forms of Krishna, as well as images of lotuses.
These paintings also depict the festivals and events of the Hindu calendar, including Diwali, Janmashtami, Holi and Sharad Purnima. Some of the most popular paintings feature Raasleela, the dance that is performed during these events.
Traditionally, these paintings were large and made of pure organic colors, but as time passed by and budgets became tighter, artists started using synthetic or mixtures of both natural and synthetic colors. In fact, many of these paintings were even created on paper instead of cotton fabric as it was cheaper and less time-consuming.
It is a form of entertainment
What is Pichwai Art?
Pichwai art is a traditional style of Indian painting which dates back to nearly 400 years. It is a form of religious art, which depicts stories, poetry, and myths, hand-painted on silk or muslin. These paintings are considered to be a pathway to grace and spirituality.
Artist Shan Bhatnagar explains how this form of art has changed his outlook on life. He is passionate about this art form and believes that it is a good way to bring in spirituality into your life.
According to him, pichwai is an ancient tradition that originated in Nathdwara, a temple town in Rajasthan. Traditionally, it is a way of paying homage to the seven-year-old Lord Krishna who carried the mountain Govardhan on his little finger for seven days to save people from the floods.
Moreover, pichwai is an aesthetic tradition that is in sync with nature and the changing seasons. This is because the screens sport tales from Krishna’s childhood, which have spectacularly coloured backgrounds. These include scenes from lakes, rivers, trees, birds, flowers and fruit.
Aside from the colourful backdrops, there are also a lot of details to be noticed when viewing these screens. The paintings are adorned with stitches, springs of gold and silver (dabka), zardozi, semi-precious stones and silver plates.
It’s a long and detailed process that takes a couple of days to complete. A master painter teaches the technique to a set of disciples, and he manages the junior artists who assist him.
He also believes that pichwai art is a great way to teach children about the story of Krishna. “This is a form of education that can be easily done by the kids and can be very beneficial for them,” he says.
This type of art is often a popular choice for home decor. It can also be bought as a gift for your loved ones.
Pichwai is a popular art form in Jaipur, where Mukul Joshi, a UNESCO gold medallist, is known for his artworks. He specializes in this art and has a number of famous pichwai paintings on display at his studio.
It is a form of souvenir
Pichwai art is a form of souvenir that depicts stories and legends related to Lord Krishna. The origin of this art form is in the ancient temple town of Nathdwara in Rajasthan, near Udaipur. The paintings are made by members of the Pushti Marg sect, founded in the 16th century by Shri Vallabhacharya.
The paintings are hung behind the deity of the temple to commemorate various events and festivals in the life of Krishna. These paintings have found their place in the homes of art connoisseurs owing to their visual appeal.
These paintings are created using quintessential motifs and characters that portray the story of Krishna’s life. Some of the most popular themes in these paintings include Srimati Radha Ji, Gopis & Cows of Vrindavan, Diwali, Gopashtami, Nand Mahotsav and Govardhan Puja.
Another major theme in these paintings is the Ras Leela of Krishna & Radha Ji. The Ras Leela is a famous event in the life of Krishna. It is one of the most popular stories in Pichwai art. It is a tale about the love affair between Radha and Krishna.
In addition to these main themes, there are also many other motifs that appear in the paintings. These motifs include the Gopis, cows and the lotus blossoms.
Most of these paintings are done on starched cotton cloth and are crafted by artists who use goat, horse and squirrel hair brushes to paint them. This is a unique process and takes considerable skill to create.
The motifs used in these paintings are quite important and have significance for devotees. For example, the motifs of cows are related to the cow Chandravalli who took the devotees to Lord Krishna.
Moreover, the motifs of Radha Ji are also significant and are related to her role in the life of Krishna. She played a key role in Krishna’s life and is the most important goddess in the Hindu pantheon.
Travellers who visit Nathdwara can take part in a workshop where they can learn how to paint their very own version of the Pichwai art. The session will be guided by trained tutors and all the materials required to complete the traditional painting will be provided at the venue. These workshops are a wonderful way to explore Indian art and culture while making a unique souvenir that can be brought back home as a memory of India.