As a part of Azadi Ka Amrit Mahotsav, Jawahar Kala Kendra (JKK) organised a virtual discussion on ‘Fresco Paintings of Rajasthan’ in ‘Samvaad Shrinkhla’ on JKK’s Facebook page. Experts of fresco painting and famous artists, Dr Nathulal Verma and Samdar Singh Khangarot ‘Sagar’ participated in the discussion. During the programme, fresco painting, its technique and features in mural painting were discussed in detail. The session was moderated by Mr Abdul Lateef Usta.
Dr Nathulal Verma said that mural painting is an ancient art done on the wall using any means. Examples of this can be seen in the form of paintings made on rocks and cave walls. A painting done on fresh or wet lime plaster usually on walled surfaces is known as fresco. There are 2 techniques of fresco painting – Buon fresco and Secco fresco. Buon fresco involves drawing and colouring on a wet surface. It is then beaten with special tools to absorb the colour in the plaster. In Secco fresco, the mural is prepared and left to dry. After which, the painter can fill in the colour at any time. In this, mineral, chemical, and vegetable dyes are used and gum is also added to make these set colours. Work using these techniques can be seen in temples, palaces or havelis. “The painter should choose the right mural (wall) with no moisture or cracks. He should also have complete knowledge of colours and tools. Materials like lime, marble powder and colour are most significant in fresco”, he said.
Samdar Singh Khangarot ‘Sagar’ said that in Rajasthan people have decorated the walls as per their level and convenience in most areas. They have decorated the walls with murals as well as ‘Mandanas’ (wall and floor painting). In Jaipur, the temples of Galta ji, Purohit Ji Ki Haveli, Nana Ji Ki Haveli and many other old havelis, palaces and temples feature old murals made using different techniques. The best example of this is found in the Shekhawati region where such fresco paintings are seen in big havelis and mansions. He also spoke about the history and features of fresco painting in different areas of the State including Jaipur.