Tanjore painting

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Description:
Tanjore painting (Tamil: தஞ்சாவூர் ஓவியம், Thanjavur Oviyam) is an important form of classical South Indian painting native to the town of Thanjavur (anglicized as Tanjore) in Tamil Nadu, India. The art form dates back to about 1600 AD, a period when Nayakas of Tanjavur encouraged art—chiefly, classical dance and music—as well as literature both in Telugu and Tamil. Tanjore paintings are known for their surface richness, vivid colours and compact composition. Essentially serving as devotional icons, the themes of most of these paintings are Hindu gods and goddesses, and saints as well. Episodes from Hindu tradition are drawn upon as elaboration to the main figure or figures placed in the central section of the picture. Tanjore paintings are in fact panel paintings done on solid wood planks, and hence were also referred to as palagai padam (palagai = "wooden plank"; padam = "picture") in local parlance. In modern times, these paintings have become souvenirs during festive occasions in South India, pieces to decorate the walls, or collectors' items for art lovers.

Technique

The process of making a Tanjore painting involves many stages. The first stage involves the making of the preliminary sketch of the image on the base. The base consists of a cloth pasted over a wooden base. Then chalk powder or zinc oxide is mixed with water-soluble adhesive and applied on the base. To make the base...
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