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Showing posts with the label Art


Rock art of Telangana

Rock art is a form of landscape art that includes designs that have been placed on boulder and cliff faces, cave walls and ceilings, and on the ground surface. Petroglyphs are rock carvings (rock paintings are called pictographs) made by pecking directly on the rock surface using a stone chisel and a hammerstone.  Of all the questions with regard to rock art the most problematic is its dating. For the relative dating of rock art the following aspects are taken into consideration.  They are: 1. Thematic content 2. Superimposition 3. State of preservation 4. Colour scheme 5. Archaeological evidence. 1. Thematic content The thematic content in the rock art of Telangana mainly consists of animal figures such as deer species, humped bull (Bos indicus), hare, rabbit , mangoose, porcupine, dog, tiger etc., and birds such as peacock, human and anthropomorphic figures, hand prints and geometric figures. The thematic content of the paintings and also the petroglyphs, is useful for understanding

Neelakanteshwara Temple

Sri Neelakanteshwara Temple is located on a beautiful Highway to Nagpur in the centre of Nizamabad Town is famous for its architecture. Apart from architecture, there is another unique factor to this temple. It is the presence of the Big Three here: Lord Shiva in Linga form, who is Swayambhu; Lord Vishnu lying supine like Lord Padmanabhaswamy and Lord Brahma sitting on his lotus. Devotees throng this temple because of the presence of the Holy Triumvirate . Kanteshwar is popular for an ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple is said to be about 500 years old and stands as an example of the architecture of the time during which it was built. This ancient temple was built by Satakarni II for Jains, who was a popular Satavahana King. During Kakatiya period, the Jain mandiram was converted to a Shiva temple when many Jains also converted to Hinduism. The structure resembles the Nagara style or Hindu architecture with influences from north. While some legends say that th

Mesolithic paintings of Mancherial

Mesolithic cave paintings found in Thaatimattayya hills of Buggagattu forest in Mancherial district of Telangana State. Historian Dr Dyavanapalli Satyanarayana has claimed that he explored the site in the Buggagattu forest area with the help of the local Naikpod tribes. He said cave paintings at Thaatimattayya are dated to be 13,000 years B.P. According to Satyanarayana, he came across the ten types of paintings drawn in five colours. Dr Satyanarayana said ‘even today families of Naikpod worship the ‘Thaatimatayyah’ or Thaadu which means palm tree. One of the most striking features of the cave paintings is the drawings of perfect circles.  It seems that the prehistoric artist had used geometric measurements to draw the circles. The circles represented human heads, womb/vagina, flying saucers, dumbbells/tool kits, sun and moon discs. The Mesolithic Age people inserted the small chips of chert stone (one-inch long and centimeter width) in the full cleavage of fist fi

Banjara Needle Crafts

Banjara needle craft is a needle craft embroidery in the state of Telangana. The craft has evolved through centuries across generations. It is an embroidery and mirror work on tapestry. The work pieces are bright-coloured. Banjara needle craft is unique to the region of Telangana. It involves use of simple needles, embroidery thread, original fabrics (cotton or woolen), and needs high proficiency in the craft. Combined together, they create splendid pieces of art. Needle work is the mainstay of this craft and the combination of certain patterns such as geometric shapes - squares, tracings and diamonds are widely used. The colourful threads used on the basic cloth along with tiny mirrors, beads and cowrie shells impart a vibrant look to the piece of cloth. The mirrors, beads and shells diverse style of stitching - herringbone, simple chain stitching, long and short stitch. Generally diverse colours such as pink, white, yellow and blue coloured clothes are used. In many instances, blu

Narayanpet Saree

The Narayanpet saree is made either of cotton or silk.  One school of thought states that in 1630 AD during Shivaji Maharaj’s campaign in the Deccan, the brightly coloured saris of the ladies caught his eye and thus the Narayanpet saree got its Royal Maratha Patronage. Other versions of the tale state that the weavers, who were part of Shivaji’s camp during a campaign, were the ones who stayed back and developed the form as we see it today. Much before the world was made aware of the concept of a global village, the Indian Subcontinent had embraced the idea. The merger of cultures of different princely states and regions in the country has produced some fantastic weaves and styles that are heralded to this day for their sheer beauty and exclusivity. The Narayanpet saree is one such example. These sarees have had the privilege of enjoying the royal patronage of the Marathas. Regarded as the garment of the Gods, Narayanpet sarees were used to drape the idols of deities and wor

Nirmal Toys

Nirmal Toys world-famous wooden toys are made in the historic town of Nirmal in Telangana state derived its name from that of a 17th-century ruler, Nimma Naidu, who had a great interest in art and toy-making. Back then, he collected about 80 artists and started a toy-making industry that came to add cultural significance to the town. The Nirmal toy cluster has 60 families registered with the state rural self-help group, who keep the craft alive, making toys that are sold through state emporia. The cluster earns revenues in the range of Rs 3- 4 lakh per month. Considering that the cluster largely produces toys, which is a non-essential item, there is always the danger of artisans losing interest in this traditional craft and moving on to more lucrative occupations. However, the award of the Geographic Indication (GI) status to Nirmal toys in 2009 was a morale booster for them. The GI status acts as a flagging device that helps producers differentiate the Nirmal toys from competing pr

Nirmal Furniture

Nirmal Furniture is furniture made in Nirmal, Adilabad, Telangana, India. It received Geographical Indication rights in 2009.  It is handmade wooden furniture. Nirmal Painted Furniture, a Brand in Itself! Every region in India, is known for its unique culture and traditions, which have also influenced the local art. Nirmal town in northern part of Telangana state shares its unique, legendary identity in the arena of arts and crafts. The skill of the artisans and craftsmen of Nirmal town is well known, right from the pre-independence days. The origin of Nirmal art and craft is traced back to the Kakatiya era. Nirmal works were influenced by the Indian Schools of Art like Kangra, Ajanta and also the Mughal miniatures. It is even said that once the Nizam of Hyderabad was accorded a grand welcome when he visited Nirmal. The artisans decorated the venue and the seat of the Nizam in a very grand manner with an intricately designed banana bud which was believed to have been suspende

Karimnagar Silver Filigree

Karimnagar Silver Filigree is a silver filigree made in Karimnagar, India. It is an ancient art of Karimnagar. Karimnagar Silver Filigree received Intellectual property rights protection or Geographical Indication (GI) status in 2007. Silver filigree, the ancient art of making silver artefacts and ornaments by using silver wire, an art which Karimnagar town is famous for, cries for attention, protection and promotion of the age-old art and tradition. Silver filigree was popular during the Nizam era when the rulers encouraged the silversmiths to make the exquisite silver plates, ‘pandhan’ and other artefacts as show-pieces. These artefacts made by the silversmiths of Karimnagar were made available at Salar Jung Museum in Hyderabad. Since 19th Century AD, the very talented craftsmen of Karimnagar fashioned rich intricate trellis/Jali made of twisted silver wire. The locals say that this unique craft was adopted some 200 years ago by the Elgandal town near the Karimnagar

Gadwal Saree

Gadwal Saree is a handcrafted woven sari style in Gadwal of Jogulamba Gadwal district in the Telangana State, India.  . Gadwal sarees are made from cotton and silk which is usually tussar or mulberry. “The dyeing is usually done at Chirala where the yarn is dipped in boiled coloured water at an extremely high temperature. Higher temperature means the colour will last a long time. It was registered as one of the geographical indication from Telangana by Geographical Indications of Goods (Registration and Protection) Act, 1999. Though Gadwal is the most famous of all, there is an entire of cluster of smaller villages also engaged in weaving these sarees. Over 800 looms are used every day at Rajoli village to create these seven yard beauties. All sarees produced here are sold to the master weavers of Gadwal, which is probably why Rajoli is overshadowed. Other notable villages where they are made are Gattu, Yemmiganur, Aiza and Nagaladinne. It takes painstaking effort over five days

Pochampally Saree

Pochampally saree or Pochampalli Ikat originates from the Bhoodan Pochampally region in Yadadri Bhuvanagiri district, Telangana. These popular sarees are renowned by their typical geometric patterns and the special Ikat style of dyeing. The uniqueness of Pochampally Ikat is its ability to create extremely complicated designs using bright dyes. The fabrics used are natural – cotton, silk and sico (a combination of silk and cotton). The painstaking weave and meticulous eye for detail makes the Pochampally weavers stand apart and are revered throughout the textile industry. Chintakindi Mallesham, a Class 6 school dropout from Telangana, has innovated the Laxmi Asu Machine easing the taxing manual process of weaving Pochampally saris and helping weavers increase their production without putting their health at risk. Pochampally Ikat uniqueness lies in the transfer of intricate design and colouring onto warp and weft threads first and then weave them together globally known

Gollabhama Saree

Gollabhama Saree or Siddipet Gollabhama Cotton sarees are globally famous, and even have the Geographical Indication Tag. Though Siddipet Gollabhama sarees have a geographical indication tag, it hasn’t led to any boost in sales for the weavers. Sustaining this art means getting the weavers to incorporate the motifs in stoles, dupattas and scarves and use new colour palettes which is happening slowly.The weavers replicate these silhouettes to create alluring designs on their looms with cotton as well as silk yarns.  The saree is often in a single colour dotted with small gollabhama butas throughout the fabric, while the larger intricate motifs are showcased on the border and/or pallu (end-piece). Typically, three motifs are used for saree designs viz. Gollabhama, Bathukamma and Kolatam, with Gollabhama being the most commonly used. These sarees get their name from the decorative motifs that are used – the gollabhama(milkmaid). Gollabhama (milkmaid motif) woven onto the b

Cheriyal Scroll Painting

Cheriyal Scroll Painting is a stylized version of Nakashi art, rich in the local motifs peculiar to the Telangana. Several hundred years ago, Kaki Podagollu, a story telling community would travel through Telengana, singing and narrating stories, and depicting them in a visual format. An hour’s drive from Hyderabad is the village of Cheriyal in Siddipet district, Telangana. Here is where the famous ‘Cheriyal Scrolls’ come from.   These canvas scrolls made from Khadi are hand-painted in a style unique to the local motifs and iconography. Characterised by a dominance of the colour red in the background, these brilliantly hued paintings even received Geographical Indication Status in 2007. Painted in panels as a narrative, these are like comic strips from the past, depicting scenes and stories from Indian mythology and epics. Distinct in their style they immediately convey age-old Indian traditions and customs in a beautiful and engaging manner. Of which, both the Lords Krish

Wargal Rock Art

Glory of prehistoric period reflects in the rock paintings in the small temple town, throwing light on the rich wildlife and tradition of Stone Age. Wargal One of those marvels left behind by the history for the posterity - rock arts - seem to continue to be the delight of archeological experts and young students. Historians from Telangana are busy deciphering the ancient paintings at the rock shelters here at Wargal in Siddipet district. These rock paintings found in parts of the State show the love humans had for art and nature as long ago as 10,000 BCE. They provide ample evidence that a large number of wild animals were present in the State centuries ago. Shambhuni Gutta (Shambu’s Hill), beside the famous Saraswathi temple here has already emerged as a great spot for explorations relating to the prehistoric life. The roofs of the caves in the hill have red pictures. The archeological department found some of these paintings. But a lot of them are yet to be explored further.

Telangana Literature

1st Century Gunadhya can be considered as the first poet of Telangana. He belonged to 1st Century A.D. He was native of Kondapuram, current Kondapur Sangareddy district of Telangana State, India. Historian believed that he lived in the pythan region. He was a court poet of Hala, the Satavahana ruler. "Brihat katha" was the first known poem-story of the Telugu region. Gunadhya wrote it in the paisachi prakrit language. Original Text is not available today, it is available in the form of translations into the sanskrit language. Its  sanskrit transaltions are Brihatkatha sloka sangraham (Somadevasuri), katha saritasagaram (Somadevasuri), Brihatkatha Manjari (kshemendra) 5th Century 410 - 435 A.D : Toluchuvandru’ rock inscription found at Keesaragutta temple in Medchal-Malkajgiri is said to be dated between 410 and 435 AD and believed to be the first recorded Telugu inscription. 575 A.D  - The Kalamalla inscription unearthed on the premises of Chennakesava-Siddeshwara temple a