Posted by Art Of Legend India [dot] Com On 4:51 AM
Garhwal or Gadhwal is a region and administrative division of Uttaranchal, lying in the Himalayas. Like the Mughal, the Rajasthani and the Kangra paintings, the Garhwal painting too has its own peculiar characteristics. Garhwal painting originated in Himachal and was first dominated by the Mughal style. Later, it started reflecting the cruder version of Kangra traditions. Garhwal painting was deeply indebted to the Kangra school. For example, human figures, architectural motifs and landscape were definitely based on the Kangra tradition. A rich collection of Garhwal paintings is displayed in the University Museum in Srinagar, Garhwal. Some of them can be seen in 'Bharat Kala Bhawan, Banaras', 'Kastur Bhai Lal Bhai Sagrahaalaya, Ahmedabad' and few in the art galleries of Kolkata, Allahabad, Lucknow and Delhi.
In 1658, a Mughal prince, fleeing from his uncle the emperor Aurangzeb, had brought to Garhwal a Mughal artist and his son. These artists were well versed in the Mughal Style of Miniature paintings. After nineteen months, the prince left Garhwal but his court painters enchanted by the environs, stayed behind. These painters settled in Srinagar, Garhwal and the then capital of the Panwar dynasty and introduced the Mughal style of painting in Garhwal, Uttaranchal. With the passage of time, the successors of these original masters became expert painters and also developed an original style of their own using very natural colors.
This style later on came to be known as the Garhwal School of painting. In Garwal paintings, passionate romance was treated with innocent grace while line itself was used to express a sense of musical rhythm. For centuries backward and aloof, within a decade Garhwal had made one of the greatest contributions to Indian paintings. The Folk Art of Kumaon known as Aipan, has been practiced by the women folk of Kumaon. Another kind of painting is known as Peeth, where floor of the seat of Gods and goddess is decorated with geometrical patterns.