5th November, 2021 Prelims



  • Traditionally, created by the women of Bihar Mithila region.



  • Traditionally done on freshly plastered mud walls and floors of huts.
  • However, now they are also done on cloth, handmade paper and canvas.
  • Paintings are made from the paste of powdered rice.
  • Uses two-dimensional imagery.
  • Tools used: Twigs, Fingers, brushes, nib-pens matchsticks.
  • Colors used are derived from plants. Ochre, Lampblack and Red is used for reddish-brown and black, respectively.
  • This painting is done with a variety of tools, including fingers, twigs, brushes, nib-pens, and matchsticks and using natural dyes and pigments. It is characterised by its eye-catching geometrical patterns.

Styles & Theme

  • Madhubani art has five distinctive styles: Bharni, Kachni, Tantrik, Godna and Kohbar.
  • Themes: Mainly religious. Depict Gods and Goddesses.
  • Natural objects like the sun, the moon, and religious plants like Tulsi are also widely painted, along with scenes from the royal court and social events like weddings.



  • Kalakriti in Darbhanga, Vaidehi and Benipatti in Madhubani district are some of the major centres of Madhubani painting, which have kept this ancient art form alive.



  • Madhubani painting has remained confined to a compact geographical area and the skills have been passed on through centuries.
  • The content and the style have largely remained the same. Thus, Madhubani painting has received GI (Geographical Indication) status.
  • Madhubani art has received worldwide attention.