Patachitra is a traditional form of cloth-based scroll painting that originated in the eastern state of Odisha in India. The name "Patachitra" is derived from two Sanskrit words - "Pata" meaning canvas or cloth, and "Chitra" meaning picture or painting.
The art form involves painting stories and folklore on a piece of cloth, usually made from cotton or silk. The cloth is first treated with a mixture of chalk and tamarind seed paste, which provides a smooth surface for the painting. The artists use natural dyes and pigments to create intricate and vibrant images, often depicting mythological and religious stories, cultural rituals, and daily life scenes.
Patachitra paintings are known for their intricate details and bold lines, which are drawn with a brush made from the hair of a squirrel or mongoose. The colors used in Patachitra paintings are made from natural sources such as vegetables, minerals, and flowers, and are often mixed with water and gum arabic to create a thick and consistent paint.
The paintings are usually scroll-like and can be up to 20 feet in length, with one painting depicting a complete story. The artists also create smaller, framed pieces that can be hung on walls.
Patachitra is not just a visual art form, but also a cultural tradition that has been passed down through generations of artists. The paintings are often accompanied by music and storytelling, and are used in religious ceremonies and cultural festivals.
Overall, Patachitra is a unique and ancient art form that is highly valued for its intricate details, vibrant colors, and cultural significance. It continues to be cherished by art lovers and collectors alike, and has gained popularity around the world for its timeless beauty and storytelling.