For centuries, Hindu women around adhubani, in the Mithila region of Bihar, India, have decorated the walls of their village homes with vivid paintings to ward off evil, mark festivals, and commemorate passage rites. This longstanding tradition, however, remained largely unknown to outsiders until the late 1960s, when a severe drought, lasting up to two years, had a devastating impact on the region’s predominantly agrarian society. To provide the community with a non-agriculture-based income, the All India Handicrafts Board then urged the women to create their paintings on paper for commercial purposes and introduced the world to Madhubani or Mithila painting.
This painting depicts a bride and bridegroom being transported to the bride's house in a palanquin, a type of enclosed chair.
pen and ink on paper
56.0 x 76.5 cm sight; 76.5 x 91.9 x 1.7 cm frame
Signature & date
Not signed. Not dated.
Gift of Claudia Hyles 1999
Not on display
© Copyright reserved
Shown in 1 exhibition
Indian Painting, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 06 Apr 2001–11 Jun 2001
Referenced in 2 publications
Jackie Menzies (Editor), The Asian Collections Art Gallery of New South Wales, 'Contemporary Painting in Urban and Village India', Sydney, 2003, 53 (colour illus.).
Haema Sivanesan, Indian painting, 'Indian Painting', verso of poster., Sydney, 2001. cat.no. 5.9