Bihar Handicrafts – Art of Bihar

Madhubani Painting

The State with Unique Exhibition of Skills of Indian Handicrafts

Bihar Handicraft is a state with rich culture and heritage, which is evident from the innumerable ancient monuments spread all over the state. The state also possesses many sacred and religions places where large number of people visits for pilgrimage. This is the place where Buddhist religion also flourished

  • FAMOUS MADHUBANI PAINTINGS – The crafts of Bihar are popular across the country. Of the many interesting handicraft of Bihar, the Madhubani Paintings are most famous, which are mostly practiced in the region of Mithila. These paintings are painted during weddings and festivals as these are regarded as auspicious. These paintings mostly depict religious subjects like marriages of god and goddesses. Madhubani paintings as the name says get its name from Mithila region of Bihar where it is widely practised particularly by women. The history of Madhubani paintings goes back to the time of Ramayana. Originally the painting was done on freshly plastered mud wall of huts, but now it is also done on cloth, hand-made paper and canvas. Madhubani painting mostly depict nature and Hindu religious figures and the themes generally associated with Hindu deities, Natural objects like sun, moon, and religious plants like tulsi.
  • STONE WORK – The Stone Work of Bihar is also a popular handicrafts. Some beautiful exaples of stone images can be seen in cities like Gaya, Nalanda and Patna. Stone works in Bihar have a rich tradition dating back to the pre-Christian era. Bihar’s stone works are both of decorative and utility character. The base of stone works in Bihar are centered around the Pattharkatti region of Atri in Gaya. However, some artisans of Gaya also practice the art and have been doing so for hundreds of years.
  • SUJINI AND KHATWA EMBRIODERY– Another craft in Bihar handicraft is Khatwa, which is an appliqué work of designing by cutting of one fabric and stitching the pieces to another fabric. Sujini and Khatwa Embroidery is famous as well as beautiful work of handicraft in Bihar. Sujini is a traditional quilt made with layers of old cloth for inner stuffing and this craft is mostly practiced in rural areas. For embroidery cotton or colorful threads are mostly used. The design in this craft mostly depicts village scene or religious scene. Khatwa is a kind of applique work in Bihar handicraft used to create decorative items like tents, canopies, shamianas, etc. This craft uses Persian designs and circular central motif designs.
  • WOOD INLAY – Wood Inlay is one of Bihar’s ancient crafts that continue to be done with different materials, like metal, ivory and stag-horn. This handicraft makes lovely decorative pieces, wall hangings, tabletops, trays, and a number of utility articles used for daily household needs. It is one of Bihar’s ancient handicrafts, which is now being done with different materials, like metal, ivory and horn and so on. This craft makes lovely decorative pieces, wall hangings, tabletops, trays, and a number of utility articles used for daily household needs
  • LACQUER WARE – It is a famous handicraft of Bihar. The use of lac has been going on for making beautiful items like boxes and bangles since early age. It is used to make decorative items and small boxes that most women use for keeping sindur. These boxes are designed with beautiful motifs. Bihar’s lacquer ware artisans are very famous for decorating various items beautifully with lacquer ware work like legs of beds, boxes, bangles and stools. Muzaffarpur, Darbhanga and Madhubani are famous for the lacquer-work, especially for production of lac-bangles.
  • BANGLE MAKING – The best works of bangle making can be seen in the city of Muzaffarpur which is considered to be the center for cottage industries. Bangles are an inseparable part of Indian customs and an integral part of make up kit of Indian women. The raw material is for bangle works is obtained from the forest nearby. The artisans use light fire to craft the delicate glasses into circular shape. These lac bangles are wonderfully decorated in bright colors usually orange and yellow and they are striped exquisitely. Often small mirror like glass pieces are adorned on the bangles. The artisans go by the market demand and their imagination to give them the most fashionable and contemporary designs.
    bangles BIHAR HANDICRAFT-aih
  • SIKKI CRAFT – It is a virtual wonder of Bihar handicrafts. It transforms the simplest and the most common of things to the most wonderful objects, as if by magic. This wonder is executed by the extremely efficient artistry of the the sikki women. Bihar’s Sikki handicraft is a product of the Mithila region of Northern Bihar. It is intrinsically connected to the cultural life of Bihar. Sikki handicraft objects are usually employed in making baskets, bags, hats and even intricate animal, bird and human figures.
    sikki BIHAR HANDICRAFT-aih
  • ROCK PAINTINGS – Rock paintings are a particular form of paintings done on the walls and ceilings of the cave shelter of ancient man. These paintings were the reflections of their social, cultural, religious and economic life. His main object of drawing were objects of nature like sun, moon, stars, animals, birds, plants, trees and rivers etc. Besides he used to draw several activities of everyday life like hunting, running, dancing and walking. These paintings were engraved on the walls and ceilings of the rock shelters with the help of some sharp objects like rock or metal pieces. Thereafter various indigenous colours like colours extracted form leaves of trees are applied on it.
  • BRASS WORK – Brass art works have flourished even during the Gupta, Maurya and Pala periods which can be observed in the archaeological excavation sites of Rajgir and Nalanda. Well handicrafted images of Gods and Goddesses, pitchers, utensils and other utility articles are made which are famous locally and in the international markets.
  • TIKULI WORK – Tikuli Work is a handicraft made from broken glass in which the craftsmen first melt the broken glass and then give it its design and shape. The superior glass is finished with wafer thin tabaque (gold or silver leaves) and this technique is used to make highly decorative pictures which adorn walls of houses and other utility items like trays, table tops, boxes, mats etc.
  • KASHIDA AND ZARI WORK – Kashida embroidery has different styles with geometrical patterns and it is done with gold and silver metallic threads, silk, sequins and beads on velvet or satin having motifs of leaf, birds etc. It is used in caps, blouses, saris, household textiles, quilts etc. Zari work is found in saris, pillow covers, table cloth, blouses etc and give an elegant and rich look to the fabricsof Bihar handicrafts.

For all art and craft lovers, Bihar is a must visit destination. Not only is it home to numerous Bihar handicraft varieties, each one of them is unique and unmatched. Since the time history has been registered, Bihar is known to have a special knack for handicrafts and artistic works. The most renowned of course are the Madhubani paintings which have been a part of Bihar lifestyle since the time of Ramayana, or so it is believed.If architecture can be considered an art form, then Bihar handicrafts can be counted among the richest state in India. The eastern state is dotted with some of the most exclusive and well sculpted monasteries and temples. A view of the many Buddhist stupas and pillars are a special treat to the eyes. The Bihar handicrafts are quite useful and practical in everyday life. Bangle making, khatwa works and stone works play an important role in day to day to life. Another reason why tourist are highly inclined towards Bihar handicrafts is that they are quite reasonably priced.

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