Orissa is known as the land of art where various different types of art forms are preserved here that are continued from earlier period of time. It is the most famous tourist destination to explore in your next weekend. This state presents various attractions for tourist that are worth watching when visited here. In India, Orissa is the only state which is popular for its culture and tradition of Hinduism. There are several pilgrimage centers, Fairs and Festivals, forts and palaces, and many more that reflects the tradition and religious culture of India in some or the other way. Orissa is not only famous for its ancient and historical monuments but it also renowned for its various types of art forms. The folks of this state indulge in various art forms and they are known as the craftsmen. The most handicrafts and other arts are the applique work, stone carving, wood carving, and paintings. Within all this categories, they are further divided into sub groups that are highly popular in this state. Following are the art forms that are practiced in Orissa by every tribal of different district, they are:-
Applique work :
This type of art form or handicrafts is the most popular in this state and mainly practiced by the Puri village tribals. The word applique is derived from the French word which means ‘art work on fabric or cloth.’ In this handicraft, the artisans design various types of motifs on the piece of cloth which enhances the fabric more. In this group, the craftsperson take a big piece of cloth and cut into desirable shape such as oval, rectangular, square, circle, and many more. According to the choice and style the thread work starts on the colorful background. The most common thread work the artisans do are the floral design, images of god and goddess, animals, motifs, human figures, and a lot more. To make the fabric more attractive, the colorful thread works are done according to the contrast of the background color.
Sometimes they also use small pieces of mirror and metal those are in different shapes. The applique work was initially started in the Pipli village, where the tribal and their family members indulged in this occupation. The folks who practice this art form belong from the Darji caste that is tailor. They are the only tribal who are honored to stitch and prepare a beautiful fabric that is made by using the techniques of applique work. The designed fabric is offered to the temple for their deities where the devotees can worship. The fabrics that are totally designed by thread work and other material are divided into different material forms; they are chikan, bakhia, guntha, and turpa. Mostly such types of work are made on the women garments, especially on the blouse, duppatta (chunari), petticoat, and many more.
Orissa is one of the famous states which are famous for paintings that are valued to watch. There are two main types of painting one is rock painting and other is patachitras. Both types are the most famous one that are practiced in this state. The tribal who live in Puri village are mainly interested in paintings. There are three main categories of the Orissan School of Paintings; they are the folk, tribal, and the classical. For the traditional painting, the artisans take a long piece of fabric and are rubbed with the earth to make the base. After rubbing it is kept to dry till it gets harder and the remaining is rubbed off. Once the base is ready, the artisans start to paint with colorful shades and designs.
Traditionally, the most common designs and motifs they paint are of animal, human being figures, god and goddess, scenes from Ramayan and Mahabharta, images of deities, and many more. The chitrakars (painters) are honored to paint the temples of Orissa, especially the Jagannath temple. In the state of Orissa, there are various religious temples that are adorned by the wall paintings with different motifs and designs. If you are planning to take a tour to Orissa, make sure you witness some of the holy shrines just to take a glance at the art form of paintings. Patachitras is the most unique and popular type of paintings in the Orissa region. In this type, the painters beautifully paint on the palm leaf. Such kind of marvelous paintings seeks the attention of the tourist to visit this place. This form of paintings was firstly initiated in Puri village and later it was practiced by other people from different district.
Stone Carving :
Stone carving is another famous Orissan crafts that was originally established in Puri village of this state. If you are eager to see the stone carvings of Orissa, make sure you explore various temples and historical sites that are enhanced with marvelous carvings. This region preserves several holy shrines that are worth seeing while exploring here, they are mostly decorated not only with the paintings, but also with the stone carvings. Each temple in this region including outer and inner are adorned with the beautiful carvings. When you visit any of the pilgrimage centers, the most common sight you can see is the wall that are engraved with sculpture and images of their deities. The main highlights of the temples are the rock cut sculptures and architectures. Each and every corner of the religious shrine is embellished with splendid forms and style of architecture.
Such kind of art form was originated from the earlier centuries where more importance was given to artisans. Apart from the temples and other pilgrimage centers, the stone carving is also used in various forts and palaces that are the home of kings and queens. Some of the palaces and forts are stone carved, especially on the dome, ceilings, pillars, chariots, and many more. There are three main types of rock stone; they are the soft white soapstone, green granite, and black granite. The lighter weight and delicate one is the white marble which is mainly used to make the idol of god and goddess, and also some of the other items. Even some of the household utensils and house ware are carved from stone. The white soapstone is mainly used in temples, forts and palaces that enhance the beauty of the place. On the streets of Orissa, visitors can spot some of the other items and showpieces that are made from the white marble, green or pinkish, and black.
Wood Carving :
Orissa state in India is also renowned for its wood carving handicrafts. This art form is well famous in the Puri village which is carved by only carpenters. The tribal who belong to this village and occupation are known as the ‘Moharana’, they are the most important folks that are honored to make some of the items that are offered to gods in temples. For example, the incense stand, candle stand, frames to fix the images of their deities, and many more. Wood toys for kids and children are most famous in this region, they mostly make the carvings of animals like tiger, lion, peacock, elephant, horse, bull, monkey, and many more. When you visit the Jagannath Temple, the chariots that are used during the festivals are carved by the wood and adorned with some detailed small carvings which enhance the horse riding vehicle.
In this temple, you can see the wooden carving of Lord Jagannath with his sister Subhadra, and brother Balabhadra stepping out of the holy shrine. Some of the wooden carvings of Orissa can be seen by visitors like the scenes from the Ramayana and Mahabharatha. They also engrave the idol of Lord Krishna with his love Radha and her Sakhis that are mostly carved in the temple. The huge temple door are magnificently carved and also painted with the vivid colors that are extracted from mineral and vegetable. The most popular wood material they use are the white teak or timber wood, they are highly used for carving some items. The carpenters also use simple tools like the hammer and chisel of different shape and size that helps to design minute motifs. The wooden handicrafts are worth to see that are kept on sale in shops or streets of Orissa where you can buy one of them to decorate your house.
It is the most popular religious center which is placed in the state of Orissa. In this place, the hair relics of Lord Buddha resided here and got the teachings of Gautama Buddha. It is the oldest pilgrimage center in Orissa which was built in the early period of time. The followers of Buddha dwell here and learn more about the regionalism of Buddhism. The construction of the holy shrine is made from rock cut which is adorned with various stone sculptures of Lord Buddha and his relics. The main aim of Buddhism was to spread peace and love amongst the people and in the whole world. So they traveled various different places and finally halted here where they can give the teachings of Buddhism. The religious shrine was established in the earlier period of 7th century and the coverage area is around 155, 707 square kilometer.
If you are planning to take a trip to the Buddhism of Orissa, make sure you visit it in the best time that is during the months of November to March. According to the record, it is considered that Lord Buddha was the manifestation of Lord Vishnu. The state of Orissa is known as the place of Buddhism even though Lord Gautama Buddha has not visited this place in his entire life span. After the hair relic, the other two also entered this state; they are the nail and tooth relics. After the death of Asoka, the religion of Buddhism has taken a setback due to the emergency of Jainism in this region. In Orissa, people who belong to this religion are not the only one who accepted the teachings of Lord Gautama Buddha, but it was also accepted by the Muslims that lived here. This historic site is worth to take a glance not only for the teachings of Buddha that are engraved on the wall surface, but also for the architectural style and sculpture. The architect of this place is acquired from the medieval period which enhances the place more and more. The teachings and cultural tradition of Buddhism is even mentioned in the History of India.