Maharashtra is home to a large number of tribes, most of which are found residing around the Deccan region. Apart from their distinct culture and lifestyle, the tribal people of the state are also known for making a number of handicrafts. Amongst the popular folk crafts of the tribes are the Warli paintings. They are made by the tribal group of Warli, residing in the Thane district - situated in the northern outskirts of Mumbai.
These are basically folk paintings that are drawn by the tribals on the
walls. The paintings are mainly drawn on the mud walls of the house and
have been said to date back to somewhere around 10th century AD.
However, Warli paintings were discovered by the experts only in the
early seventies. Many experts have compared the Warli paintings with the
paintings belonging to the renowned Madhubani school of Bihar.
Drawing of paintings is a part of the culture of the Warli tribals.
They are usually painted by the womenfolk of the tribe, on special
occasions like marriage. Rice paste and straw are the main materials
used for making Warli paintings. After the paintings are complete, they
are smeared on the walls of the huts. However, with time, the paintings
have evolved and now, they are done on paper also. You can find Warli
paintings in a number of places in India.
Many Warli paintings revolve around religious themes. Apart from that,
they also depict the normal life, like images of human beings and
animals. Hunting, dancing, sowing and harvesting scenes are some other
incidents that make up the themes of Warli paintings. For the paintings,
an austere brown surface is used as the base. White color is used to
paint and occasionally, one can see the use of dots in red and yellow.