Learn Odisha’s own Pattachitra sitting in Mysore

Heard of Pattachitra? It’s a cloth-based scroll painting from Odisha. There is a chance to learn this ancient art sitting in Mysore.

Thanks to Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Manav Sangrahalaya (IGRMS), an institution under the Ministry of Culture, Government of India, a workshop on Pattachitra has been organised on its premises at Wellington House here under its popular ‘Do and Learn’ series.

Pattachitra artist Bijoy Kumar Bikri and his assistant have been roped in by the IGRMS to teach the art to interested art enthusiasts. About 21 participants are attending the workshop, which began on Tuesday.


According to the IGRMS, Pattachitra is a traditional painting of Odisha and the paintings are based on the Hindu mythology. All colours used in the paintings are natural.

The name Pattachitra has been evolved from Sanskrit words ‘Patta’, meaning canvas, and ‘Chitra’, meaning picture. Pattachitra is thus a painting done on canvas, and manifested by rich colourful application, creative motifs and designs, and portrayal of simple themes, mostly mythological in depiction, according to the information provided by the IGRMS.

The tradition of Pattachitra paintings is more than a thousand years old. The Pattachitra paintings can be seen at religious centres of Puri, Konark and Bhubaneshwar regions.

The best work is found in and around Puri, especially at Raghurajpur village, a note from IGRMS stated.

Subject matter

The subject matter of Pattachitra is mostly mythological, religious stories and folklore. The themes are chiefly on Lord Jagannath and Radha-Krishna, Balabhadra and Subhadra, temple activities and so on. The individual paintings of gods and goddesses are also being created.

Dress style

The Pattachitra style is a blend of both folk and classical elements, but leans more towards folk forms. The dress style has Mughal influences. All the poses have been confined to a few well-defined postures, the IGRMS said.

Traditionally, the Pattachitra painters are known as chitrakars. A Patta painter's home, along with all members of the family, is his studio. Woman members prepare the glue, the canvas and apply colours. The master hand, mostly a male member, draws the initial line and gives the finishing touch, the note said.

The painters use vegetable and mineral colours, without going for factory made poster colours. They prepare their own colours. The colours used in Patta paintings are primarily bright. The brushes used by these artists are also indigenous and made of hair of domestic animals.

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Printable version | Aug 12, 2020 12:51:54 PM |

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