Thursday, 12 January 2012

Gond Paintings: A Mystic world created by Dots and Lines

Gond Painted Tray
The word Gond comes from the Dravidian expression kond , meaning green mountain .The Gonds were the ruling class in many parts of Central India in the 14th century. Gond rajas, or kings, ruled until they were conquered by Muslim armies and were forced to flee into the thick jungles.

In the Gond belief system, besides Bara Deo (Great God), every hill, river, lake, tree, and rock is inhabited by a spirit and therefore sacred. Like most tribals, the Gonds are artistically gifted: they paint their house walls with artistic designs. Both male and female family members participate in painting. Gond paintings  are done on village mud walls use colors derived from charcoal, colored soil, plant sap, leaves, and cow dung and can last up to 20 years. These paintings are found in the inner and outer walls of the houses , windows and niches . Gond paintings reflect man’s relationship with Nature. In Gond art, horses, stags, tigers, birds, gods and people are painted in several bright colours and filled with dots, lines or other geometrical patterns to give a texture. This style of painting has been called by various names: Jangarh Kalam, Pardhaan painting, Gond painting, etc.

Painting Process
Gond paintings are fascinating , where the artists express their faiths and beliefs , world view , their visual expression and sense of identity , both as a collective , and as individuals . Gond paintings are based basically on line work . The artists draw the inner and outer lines with utmost care that are so striking in their precision and perfection . The imaginative use of the line imparts a sense of movement of still images . The colours are mainly black and white , red , blue and yellow .

 The motifs are further associated with the rich repertoire of the community and strongly show the interactions with the cosmic , natural and social worlds of humans at multiple levels and contexts . Local deities , cock fights , forest scenes , agriculure, marriages and other rituals find a place in these paintings . Gond artists paint their lives vividly , drawing from their heritage which gives them a rich canvas.

Prominent colours
Gond Painted Study Table

Deep red – derived from Al tree
Yellow - from Chui  mitti (Local Sand)
Brown - from Gheru mitti (Another type of Sand)
Green - from leaves, and
Red - from hibiscus flower

Originally, natural colours were used for painting. Nowadays  because of non-availability of  natural colours and the easy availability of  alternative colours, the artists have began to utilize poster colours in their work. Black and white colours were not generally used, but now they are also being used.

The Gond art rendezvous with the belief that "viewing a good image begets good luck". This inherent belief led the Gonds to decorating their houses and the floors with traditional tattoos and motifs.The Gond paintings also bear a resemblance to Australian aboriginal art.

Gond Painted Products such as Gond Painting on Wood, Gond Painted Wooden trays or Gond Painted Cookie Boxes etc are available on on the below links:

Video on Gond Art


  1. Wow... its superb painting. We would like to have some more post about amazing art paintings over here thanks for sharing

  2. Great information. Thanks for providing us such a useful information. Keep up the good work and continue providing us more quality information from time to time.

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  3. Very interesting really. I had no idea about this painting before. I im impressed with the art work of Gond painting. Gond painting study table looks beautiful and stunning at first look. Fantastic work!

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  5. Excellent information. Gond is one of the largest communities in India that originated from Madhya Pradesh. Their main theme is like animals, god, historic lifestyle and more with the basis of dots and lines. Another interesting fact is all are these paintings are more vivid, colorful and prominent. I have recently visited Must Art Gallery and they have huge collection of gond art paintings by famous Indian artists. Thanks for share this blog.