On the concluding day of the online session, ‘Making a Mandana’ by Mandana artist, Dr Shakuntala Mahawar, participants learned this oldest form of folk art using a pre-prepared base and different design elements of Mandana. The session focused on the techniques and skills required for making beautiful Mandana, styles from different regions of Rajasthan as well as designs prepared during various festivals and seasons in the art form.
The artist began by drawing a line from one corner of the canvas to the other using a pencil. She also drew a line down the centre. After this, using ‘Gerua Mitti’ (red-coloured mud) and a thin brush she made a square in the middle of the canvas and doubled the line of the shape. Then, she drew triangles, lines and other shapes to expand the design. She said that Mandana is a large piece of art and is drawn by the artist by moving all around the floor. At first, the artist only draws in the area that they can reach with their hands. After this, the design is further expanded. A Mandana should never be stepped on. It is considered inauspicious.
The artist said that different types of Mandanas are made on various occasions and seasons. A Mandana has more work done with white than red. The more the design is filled the better it looks. Lines drawn in this need not be precise and even if they are a little crooked it adds to the beauty of the design. Once the Mandana is complete one cannot tell from where the design begins and where it ends. After the basic structure of the Mandana was complete, the artist did ‘Chiran’, ‘Charti’ and ‘Bharti’ (filling) and added ‘Shringar’ (adornment) to it. Smaller designs like ‘Swastik’ and ‘Chakra’ were made around the Mandana to finish the design. The artist also showcased different types of Mandana like Jaisalmer, Shekhawati, Lehariya, Dumri Chowk and others.
On 5 July, there will be a ‘Mesmerizing Meenakari’ online session by Shilpguru Inder Singh Kudrat at 3 pm on Zoom. The session will focus on different materials, techniques and skills required to create beautiful ‘Meenakari’ masterpieces.