History of Paintings of Eastern India
Eastern Indian painting developed in the 10th century. These miniature paintings portray Buddhist theologies and scenes from the life of Buddha which were painted on the leaves of the palm-leaf manuscripts with their wooden covers. The initial existing miniature paintings are found in a manuscript of the Astasahasrika Prajnaparamita is currently under the control of The Asiatic Society, Kolkata. This style departed from India in the late 12th century.
The coastal strip of Odisha had its individual tradition of painting which is particularly associated with the sect of Jagannath at Puri. Paintings of this popular god are manufactured as holy gifts for pilgrims to take home with them.
Themes of Paintings of Eastern India
Buddhist and the life of Buddha were the chief subject matters of Eastern Indian Painting. Panoramas from the Krishna-lila or of the ten avatars of Vishnu are the favoured subjects. The traditional cloth painting presents the use of bright colours which is combined with a tiny and featured practice. Other topics consist of deities popular in the area, Krishna pacifying the demon snake Kaliya, five-headed Ganesha and the lion-headed avatar of Vishnu that is Narasimha.
Types of Paintings of Eastern India
Eastern Indian Painting flourished in the area of Bihar, West Bengal and Odisha mainly. Following are the different types of Eastern Indian Painting:
• Paintings of Bihar: The most prominent of painting of Bihar is Madhubani painting. It is also popularly known as Mithila paintings and is mainly practiced in Mithila region of this state. Attractive geometric patterns are the characteristic feature of this painting is carried out by fingers, nib-pens, twigs, brushes or matchsticks. Natural pigments and dyes are used in this art. Mostly the women residing in Darbhanga, Madhubani and Mithila regions are engaged in this region.
• Paintings of Odisha: Odisha is famous for Patachitra which is the folk painting of the state. The tradition of this art form is believed to be closely linked with Lord Jagannath. Odisha rock paintings are also well known and acclaimed throughout the country. This type of painting covers a range of motifs including floral, geometrical, human figures dancing, fighting or hunting. Tribal paintings of Odisha are also famous owing to the religious belief that they appease the deities. An ethnic painting of Saora tribe is known as Idital. Kondhs draw geometric patterns on the walls of their houses known as Manji Gunda whereas figurative designs are drawn by the Santhal tribe.
• Paintings of West Bengal: Paintings have long been intertwined with the culture of West Bengal also. Kalighat painting is the most prominent painting of the state having its origin in the vicinity of Kalighat temple in 19th century. This form a painting depicts a variety of themes including mythological characters, village scenarios, scenes from festivals and occasions and many more. The most enchanting feature of Kalighat paintings is the illustrations of daily life in the most exquisite manner.