Rangoli- An Art In Indian Culture

Fundamentals of Art and Design 3(1+2)

Lesson : 15 Folk and Rural Art in India

Rangoli- An Art In Indian Culture

  1. Rangoli is a symbol of religious and cultural beliefs. It is considered as important part of the spiritual process. Rangoli, one of the most beautiful and most pleasing art forms of India, is comprised of two words, ‘rang’ meaning ‘color’ and ‘aavalli’ meaning colored creepers’ or ‘row of colors’. Rangoli basically comprises of the art of making designs or patterns on the walls or the floor of the house, using finely ground white powder along with different colors. Numerous households in the Indian subcontinent make use of Rangoli designs for decorating the courtyard of their house.

  2. Rangoli is a folk art from India:-
    Rangoli are decorative designs made on the floors of entrance, living rooms, pooja room, kitchen room and courtyards during Hindu festivals. They are meant to be sacred welcoming areas for the Hindu deities. The ancient symbols have been passed on through the ages, from each generation to the next, thus keeping both the art from and the tradition alive. The patterns are typically created with materials, including colored rice, dry flour (colored) sand or even flower petals.
    One of the purpose of Rangoli is decoration, and it is thought to bring good luck. Design-depictions may also vary as they reflect traditions, folklore and practices that are unique to each area. Generally, this practice is showcased during occasions such as festivals, auspicious observances, celebrations of marriages and other similar milestones and gatherings. It is also believed that, Rangoli were not just a medium of decoration but it reduces negative energy and add positivity to places where it made.
    Rangoli designs can be simple geometric shapes, deity impressions, flower and petal shapes (appropriate for the given celebrations), but they can also become very collaborate designs crafted by numerous people. The base material is usually dry or wet granulated rice or dry flour, to which sindoor (vermilion), Haldi (turmeric) and other natural colors can be added. Use of chemical / synthetic colors and stencils are a modern variation.

  3. Rangoli Designs & Patterns
    The traditional form of Rangoli made use of designs and motifs based on nature, such as mango, creepers, flowers, swans, peacocks, etc. Even the colors in the traditional art form were extracted from natural dyes, like barks of trees, leaves, indigo, etc. However, the practice is not much in use now. These days, synthetic dyes have more or less replaced the natural dyes of the earlier times. The materials used in the Rangoli patterns of today give either a very flat appearance or a 3-D effect. Rangoli designs used presently include, geometrical patterns, the swastika, lotus, trident, fish, conch shell, creepers, leaves, trees, flowers, animals, etc.

  4. Making of The Rangoli
    Usually, the colors used for making Rangoli comprises of a coarse grained-powder base into which other colors are mixed. However, one can also make use of colored powder for impressive decorations. It is best to make Rangoli on a coarse base, such as sand, marble dust, saw dust, etc, as it provides a good grip and at the same time, one is able to sprinkle colors with greater control. The colors used are, by and large, very fine pigment powders like gulal or aabir.

  5. Rangoli in Different States

    Rangoli art is known by different names in different parts of the country, such as:

    • Alpana (Bengal)
    • Aripana (Bihar)
    • Kolam (Kerala &Tamilnadu)
    • Chowkpurana (Uttar Pradesh)
    • Madana (Rajasthan)
    • Muggu (Andhra Pradesh)
    • Rangoli (Gujarat, Karnataka and Maharashtra)
Last modified: Thursday, 14 June 2012, 10:38 AM